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Sushma Swaraj promises to reunite Geeta with her parents

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has assured Geeta, the mute-deaf girl who returned to India in October this year after being stranded in Pakistan for over a decade, that the government is trying hard to locate the whereabouts of her parents.Geeta, who returned to India on October 26 after inadvertently crossing into Pakistan over a decade ago, is staying here at a facility of a hearing and speech impaired institute run by a local NGO.
on Tuesday, Swaraj met the girl.”Sushma called Geeta to a hotel here last night. As soon as the girl reached Sushma’s place, the overwhelmed Minister hugged her. In a 30-minute meeting, the Minister assured the girl that the government is employing all possible means to trace her parents to re-unite her with them,” the institute’s sign language department head Monika Punjabi Verma said on Wednesday. Geeta showed Swaraj a cloth which she had knitted after which the minister admired her talent, the sign language expert added. On December 18, the Minister had tweeted Geeta’s photographs snapped during days when she got separated from her parents, mentioning some of her birth marks, in an apparent attempt to reach her parents.On Tuesday, a 40-year-old woman from Jabalpur district of Madhya Pradesh claimed herself to be mother of Geeta. The woman, Aneesa Bi gave an application seeking permission to meet Geeta by describing her as her daughter, Najjo. According to her, she had disappeared from Gotegaon in Narsinghpur district about 13 years back. The woman also submitted a passport size photograph of her lost girl, District in-charge collector, Ashish Singh told PTI.He said Aneesa’s application was forwarded to Social Justice Department. The officer recalled receipt of four similar applications in the past staking claim for Geeta and sought permission to meet her. “These (applications) too were forwarded to Centre,” he said.Earlier, in November, a (Mahato) family from Bihar had come forward claiming that Geeta was their daughter after she felt that they were her parents. However, DNA tests conducted on her proved otherwise.Mahato claimed Geeta was his first child and her name was Heera who was lost in a fair in 2004. Geeta had failed to recognise the Mahato family after arriving here though after seeing their photographs had earlier identified them.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

No clue about Prof G N Saibaba’s health: Family

In June last year, the Mumbai police had arrested him for his alleged links with Maoists, after questioning him more than four times at his residence. A division bench headed by Bombay high Court Chief Justice had granted interim bail.

Prabhati Nayak Mishra
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NHRC must comment on rights of rape victims: Nirbhaya’s parents

Paving the way for a new juvenile system in which the age of criminal culpability will now be 16 years, subject to some conditions, the Rajya Sabha earlier this week passed the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill, 2015.

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7th Pay Commission: Five states ask Modi government to ‘go slow’ on salary hikes

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“Punjab’s finances are under stress and the burden of the Pay Commission’s recommendations will certainly have an impact… Our officials have informally taken up the matter with the Centre,” confirmed Punjab Finance Minister PS Dhindsa.

Arun Jaitley and AK Mathur

Five states have asked the Narendra Modi government to go slow on the implementation of the Seventh Pay Commission’s recommendations, says a report in Indian Express.The five states are West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Odisha. These states have asked for more time before being able to absorb pay hikes as recommended by the Commission, due to their financially delicate situation.”There are several states who have approached the Prime Minister’s Office, Cabinet Secretary and Niti Aayog, seeking more time in implementation of the Seventh Pay Commission’s report,” said a government official to Indian Express.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Seventh Pay Commission, headed by Justice AK Mathur, submitted its report to the government last month, recommending 23.55% overall hike in pay, allowances and pensions of government employees with effect from January 1, 2016. This means the Centre’s salary bill will increase by Rs 1,02,100 crore in 2016-17.”Punjab’s finances are under stress and the burden of the Pay Commission’s recommendations will certainly have an impact… Our officials have informally taken up the matter with the Centre,” confirmed Punjab Finance Minister PS Dhindsa.”Normally they (states) adopt the Centre’s recommendations. This is the normal procedure, but it certainly depends upon their (states’) financial health. Some of the states have not even implemented the Sixth Pay Commission’s recommendation,” Justice Mathur told The Indian Express.”Some of the states may have suggested (delayed implementation) to the government, but I don’t think the Government of India is in a bad position,” he said.When contacted, Odisha’s Additional Chief Secretary (Finance Department), R Balakrishnan said: “At this stage, we don’t want to comment on it.”The West Bengal government has set up its own Pay Commission to determine the hike. It is expected to be on the same lines as enumerated by the Centre.Meanwhile, the Union finance ministry has set up an implementation cell for processing and implementing accepted recommendations of the Seventh Pay Commission.

Madras HC quashes order directing PIO activist to leave India

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Activist had received the order from the district Collector asking to leave the country within seven days with all his family members.

The Madras High Court on Thursday set aside an order of Udhagamandalam District Collector directing a lawyer activist attached to a US-based NGO and his family members, who are Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) holding US passports, to leave the country within seven days. In an urgent sitting on the petition by Gregory Omar Malstead, residing in the country since 2000, Justice K Kalyanasundaram quashed the December 14, 2015 order of the Collector and directed him to pass an appropriate order in accordance with law after giving a personal hearing to the petitioner as expeditiously as possible. While the petitioner contended that during his 15 years of stay in the country he had not violated any law or indulged in any objectionable activity, the central government submitted that Malstead was ‘propagating’ his religion under the guise of taking up the cause of exploitation of women and children. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Defending the District Collector’s order, senior central government Standing Counsel Rabu Manohar submitted that the petitioner had been propagating his religion under the guise of social activities in Udhagamandalam, a hill resort town. The Judge directed the petitioner to co-operate with the inquiry. He also made clear that any adverse order against the petitioner shall not be implemented for a period of two weeks. According to Malstead, he, his wife Rebecca Ann Malstead and two children are overseas citizens of India holding US Passports as per a January 9, 2015 order of the government recognising all Persons of Indian Origin as OCIs. He is a member of American Bar Association and Georgia State Bar Association.Initially, he was residing in Mumbai and was a consultant with International Justice Mission (IJM) when the Deputy Commissioner of Police, Special Branch, directed him to leave India immediately on the ground that his activities as a human rights activist amounted to alleged violation of visa rules.When he challenged it, the Mumbai High Court passed an order that he should be given personal hearing before passing any orders and the matter was put to rest thereafter. From March 2005, he was residing in Udagamandalam where he later become National Director of Freedom Firm, having registered office at Udagamandalam and a registered trust associated with the Freedom Firm, USA, a not-for-profit company involved in rescue of minors sold into the commercial sex trade, Malstead said.His children were studying in class 10 and 11 respectively in a school in the hill resort town. Whileso, he received the order from the district Collector asking to leave the country within seven days with all his family members.The petitioner claimed no opportunity was given to him before issuing the order and that he was completely unaware of the reasons for such a directive. He further contended his work for the social cause of exploited women was appreciated by authorities, including the District Judge and Chief Judicial Magistrate of Udagamandalam. On receipt of the order, he met the Collector on December 22 and sought more time to leave India citing his children’s studies. But the Collector refused to grant any more time.Malstead claimed the order was passed on the basis that he was a foreigner. However, he was holder of a PIO card which is now deemed to be an OCI card and as such he has the status of a citizen of India and consequently cannot be termed a foreigner .

Open fire in Delhi court killing a constable and injuring main target

A gang of four persons were involved in an open firing in Delhi’s northeast district’s Karkardooma court injuring their main target — an undertrial named Chennu Pehelwan alias Irfan – and killing Ram Kumar Meena – the head constable who was accompanying Irfan on Wednesday. Irfan, originally from Meerut, is a history sheeter with more than 16 criminal cases lodged against him in Uttar Pradesh and Delhi. He was brought to court on Thursday in a firing case that took place earlier this year. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>According to eyewitness accounts and police reports, at 11:15 am, Irfan’s matter – item no. 27, in the court had just concluded in criminal court number 73 in front of Metropolitan Magistrate Sunil Gupta. The judge had asked the defence lawyer Saquib Qureshi to present the plaintiff in court after lunch the same day. As the group, including constable Meena, the plaintiff and the defence lawyer, was exiting, two persons fired around eight rounds in an attempt to kill Irfan. People inside the courtroom, numbering more than 30, started ducking and diving behind cupboards to escape the bullets. While Irfan sustained injuries, Meena was hit by five bullets to the chest and was killed in the crossfire. According to unconfirmed reports, a court clerk was also injured, whereas the bullets whizzed past the judge’s head narrowly missing him. While the two shooters were caught instantly, two others, who were lying in wait outside Gupta’s courtroom no. 73 immediately attempted to flee. Along the way they threw their weapons by the main staircase near the toilets to avoid getting caught. However, people from the crowd and a few brave lawyers gave a chase and captured the absconders. “The four suspects — all suspected to be minors — are in police custody and undergoing interrogation,”said B Gujar, Deputy Commissioner of Police (East). One of the minors is also suspected to be a history sheeter with a murder case pending against him. Had the president promulgated the Juvenile Justice Act which was passed in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday, the four arrested would have been the first to be prosecuted under it. Meanwhile the Delhi government announced Rs1 crore compensation for the family of the constable who died in the firing.Bystanders present at the time recounted the events to this dna reporter as they unfolded. According to various sources inside the court, there were 62 matters before lunch in courtroom number 73 which mostly handles criminal matters. Hence, the court was filled with at least 20-25 people. “When the firing began, everybody started running helter-skelter. Some even barged in courtroom number 74 – which is exactly opposite the crime scene,” said a court clerk present at the time. “I was busy serving tea to four-five customer when I heard the shots echo, then immediately after, I saw a group of people charging down the stairs followed by police personnel,” says Chandan Pandey, a tea vendor who sits on the fourth floor. The firing took place on the fifth floor of the building. With the crime rate on the rise, and the question of juveniles and crime being a debated subject, the question of security is a matter of grave concern. When one visits the Karkardooma court, one must walk through a metal detector and get the bags scanned. Ironically, right next to the scanner, there is a huge signboard stating “No weapons or photography allowed inside the court premises.” Even the pat down and the frisking performed by security personnel at the main entrance is inept and ineffectual. According, to a police statement, the four suspects were able to sneak in their weapons since their entered from the gates closest to the lawyers parking lot, where the security is inadequate. The under trials brought to court – be it a petty offence, or a high risk prisoner like Irfan, constable merely escort them around by simply holding their hands. There are around 80 police personnel manning and securing the entire court premise where as on the fifth floor, one could count six CCTV cameras – one in the centre of the floor area while the rest were focused on the entrance at the main staircase. According to the police, Irfan and the four suspects belonged to rival gangs and the shootout was gang related.

Uphaar tragedy: Delhi police seek transfer of case to another judge

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The Delhi Police accused the current judge hearing the case of hostility.

Sushil and Gopal Ansal
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Delhi police on Wednesday petitioned the high court for shifting a case of alleged destruction of evidence in the 1997 Uphaar fire tragedy being heard by a trial court to some other judge, accusing the one currently hearing it of “hostility” towards the complainant and the state.In its plea, the police has also alleged that the sessions court judge is “conducting the case in a manner alien to law and upon his own whims and fancies”.Hearing the matter, Justice Siddharth Mridul ordered issuance of notices to Ansal brothers, the owners of Uphaar theatre, and other accused in the case. The notices issued to real estate barons Sushil and Gopal Ansal, Dharamveer Malhotra and Anoop Singh are returnable before January 5 next year.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The move came on a plea moved by the Delhi police seeking the transfer of the case, pending in the court of an additional sessions judge at Patiala House court in New Delhi, to some other competent court having jurisdiction.”The atmosphere in the court is unfortunately very hostile qua the complainants and the state. The sessions court is conducting the case in a manner alien to law and upon his own whims and fancies which is resulting in the loss of confidence in the trial process. The victims who have fought a long battle in court are feeling intimidated and undermined,” the Delhi police plea said.They further said that the case of the prosecution is one of conspiracy, yet the judge is insisting that the case is argued piecemeal, i.e, the accused-wise and has stated he would pass orders accused-wise which is not only contrary to “elementary principles of conspiracy but also a stand adopted to prevent the prosecution from presenting its case in entirety.”The trial court had on May 31 last year ordered framing of charges against the seven accused for abetment of offence, causing disappearance of evidence, criminal breach of trust by public servant and criminal conspiracy.Theatre owners Gopal Ansal and his brother Sushil Ansal, Anoop Singh, Prem Prakash Batra, Harswaroop Panwar, Dharamveer Malhotra as well as a court employee, Dinesh Chandra Sharma, are accused of tampering with evidence in the case, pending since 2006.On June 13, 1997, a fire had broken out at the theatre during the screening of Bollywood film ‘Border’, killing 59 people and injuring over 100. A court had on January 31, 2003, ordered an inquiry after some documents related to the Uphaar case had gone missing from the court’s record room. After an inquiry, the court employee was dismissed from service.

Rajya Sabha wasted half its time, Rs 9.9 crore, after disruptions during Winter Session

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While the Lok Sabha where the BJP enjoys a good majority worked worked for 115 hours the Rajya Sabha lost 55 hours due to interruptions by the Opposition.

The continuos disruptions happening in the Rajya Sabha where the government is in a numerical minority has led to the house losing Rs. 9.9 crore, reports NDTV. The report says that the cost of running the house is Rs 29,000 per minute. The productivity of the Upper House is far lower as compared to that of Lok Sabha.While the Lok Sabha where the BJP enjoys a good majority worked for 115 hours the Rajya Sabha lost 55 hours due to interruptions by the Opposition. Lok Sabha passed 14 bills and registered 104% productivity, Rajya Sabha passed nine bills with just 46% productivity. The Goods and Services Tax bill is still pending in Rajya Sabha.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Lower House spent 50 hours on non-legislative business and 33 hours on legislation whereas the Upper House spent 37 hours on non-legislative work and less than 10 hours on legislation. 65 per cent of its time was spent on non-legislative business.In the Question Hour, the Lok Sabha got 87% productivity, clocking nearly 15 hours while the Rajya Sabha clocked in 14% productive time at just 2.4 hours.Regarding the Juvenile Justice Bill, the Rajya Sabha functioned non-stop for five hours on December 22 to pass the bill which was passed by the Lok Sabha in May.

Delhi HC refuses to stay AAP’s Odd-Even formula for plying vehicles

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The bench further observed that the city government has called for representation from various stakeholders of the society and as of today they have not finalised any scheme.

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday refused to give interim stay on AAP government’s plan to impose the odd-even number plate formula for plying of private vehicles from January 1. A bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath declined the request made by one of the five petitioners that the court should at least grant stay on the implementation of the government’s idea till January 6, which has been fixed as the next date of hearing on the PILs. “Sorry. We do not know whether it (the odd-even formula) will be implemented or not. The Delhi government has not yet come out with any scheme on this issue,” the bench said, adding, “As of today we cannot grant such relief.” The bench further observed that the city government has called for representation from various stakeholders of the society and as of today they have not finalised any scheme.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Additional Standing Counsel (ASC) Piyush Kalra, appearing for Delhi government, submitted before the court that as of now they have no notification for the proposed plan. The bench, meanwhile, has asked the government to consider representation of a physically challenged man Nipun Malhotra, one of the petitioners who has urged the court to allow such commuters to use their own vehicles as public transport is not disabled-friendly. It said, “We are concerned about this class (physically challenged) of people, so the Delhi government should consider them as well.” “What precaution you are taking with regard to disabled people?” the bench asked the government. The court was hearing five PILs filed by different individuals against AAP government’s plan to impose odd-even number plate formula.

Juvenile Justice Bill: Ramdas Athawale claims those with sexual urges should be forcibly married

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“Those who have sexual urges… they should be taught a lesson. They should get married. And if they have sex, then it should be consensual.”

File Photo

On Tuesday, veteran lawmaker Ramdas Athawale, the president of the Republic Party of India made some bizarre remarks before passing the Juvenile Justice Act in parliament. He was quoted saying by NDTV, “Those who have sexual urges… they should be taught a lesson. They should get married. And if they have sex, then it should be consensual.”He also used an expletive that was expunged from the remarks. He also claimed that during the times of Shivaji, no one would commit such crimes as their hands and legs were broken and the law should allow a modern democracy like India to do the same. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Meanwhile, Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi thanked the opposition for passing the much-expected Juvenile Justice Bill under which juveniles aged 16 years and above will now be tried under laws for adults for heinous crimes.”This is a Bill that everyone feels strongly about and I am happy that everyone supported it,” Gandhi said as she stepped out of Parliament. Congress leader Renuka Chaudhary said her party was the architect of the Bill in many ways and just wanted an intense debate on various aspects of the Bill. CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury said the walkout by the Left parties was not in protest of the Bill, but because they wanted the Bill to go to a Select Committee so that all aspects are looked into. “If tomorrow you catch hold of a young ISIS terrorist, you will say bring down the age by another two years. The question is not about the age but the kind of crime that has been committed,” he said. The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill, which provides for lowering the age for trial from 18 years, was passed by Rajya Sabha with a voice vote after a walkout by Left parties which wanted it to be sent to a Select Committee. The bill was passed by Lok Sabha earlier.

Juvenile Justice Bill passed in Rajya Sabha; Nirbhaya’s parents welcome the Bill

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The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill, which provides for lowering the age for trial from 18 years, was passed by Rajya Sabha with a voice vote after a walkout by Left parties which wanted it to be sent to a Select Committee.

Parents of the December 16 gangrape victim welcomed the passage of the long-pending Juvenile Justice Bill.
File Photo
PTI
Juveniles aged 16 years and above will now be tried under laws for adults for heinous crimes as Parliament on Tuesday passed a much-expected bill in this regard against the backdrop of a juvenile convict being released in the gangrape-cum-murder case of December 2012.The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill, which provides for lowering the age for trial from 18 years, was passed by Rajya Sabha with a voice vote after a walkout by Left parties which wanted it to be sent to a Select Committee. The bill was passed by Lok Sabha earlier.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Replying to the debate on the bill, Women and Child Development (WCD) Minister Maneka Gandhi said the legislation was a “nuanced” one and was much needed to act as a “deterrent”. She said the incidents of heinous crimes by juveniles of the age of 16 years and above were on the rise and cited statistics to support her contention.Allaying concerns expressed by members about the implications of the proposed legislation, Gandhi said it was “not against children but rather provides for, protects, nurtures and keeps them safe.” While CPI(M) members led by Sitaram Yechury staged a walkout demanding that the Bill be sent to a Select Committee, most of the other parties including Congress welcomed the passing of the legislation.The bill was taken up against the backdrop of uproar over release of juvenile convict in the heinous gangrape-cum-murder of a 23-year-old girl on December 16, 2012. Parents of the victim have said that the convict could escape after spending three years in a correction home only because the law is weak.Parents of the December 16 gangrape victim today welcomed the passage of the long-pending Juvenile Justice Bill saying that it will deter juveniles from committing such crime against women even though they rued that their daughter has been denied justice.”Although we are satisfied that the amendments have been passed as these will help victims of heinous crime get justice, there is grief that our daughter Jyoti was denied justice. The juvenile convict who was the most brutal was set free despite our repeated pleas and demands,” said the mother Asha Devi outside Parliament.”This was a good thing that happened. Our efforts at least produced some results. By releasing the juvenile convict in this case, authorities had given out a wrong message but the new law will deter juveniles from committing heinous crimes against women,” said the father, Badri Singh Pandey.The parents watched the proceedings from the visitor’s gallery in Rajya Sabha throughout the day as lawmakers debated the bill.

Juvenile Justice Bill: Here are 7 things you should know about the Bill

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The bill was taken up against the backdrop of uproar over release of juvenile convict in the heinous gangrape-cum-murder of a 23-year-old girl on December 16, 2012.

The juvenile convict in the Nirbhaya rape case has been released.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Juveniles aged 16 years and above will now be tried under laws for adults for heinous crimes as Parliament today passed a much-expected bill in this regard against the backdrop of a juvenile convict being released in the gangrape-cum-murder case of December 2012.The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill, which provides for lowering the age for trial from 18 years, was passed by Rajya Sabha with a voice vote after a walkout by Left parties which wanted it to be sent to a Select Committee. The bill was taken up against the backdrop of uproar over release of juvenile convict in the heinous gangrape-cum-murder of a 23-year-old girl on December 16, 2012.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Here are 7 salient features of the Bill: 1) The Juvenile Justice Bill was introduced in the Parliament for the first time in 2014. The bill was passed by Lok Sabha earlier.2) The Bill replaces the Juvenile Justice Act, 2000 which addresses children in conflict with law and children in need of care and protection.3) The Bill will permit juveniles between the ages of 16-18 years to be tried as adults for heinous offences. 4) Any 16-18 year old, who commits a ‘serious offence’ (not heinous), maybe tried as an adult only if he is apprehended after the age of 21.5) Juvenile Justice Bill and Child Welfare Committees (CWC) will be constituted in each district. The JJB will determine whether to send offender for rehabilitation or will be tried as an adult. CWC will determine institutional care for children in need of care and protection.6) Rules for eligibility of adoptive parents and procedure for adoption have been included in the Bill; Penalties for cruelty against a child, offering a narcotic substance to a child, and abduction or selling a child have been prescribed. 7) This bill is not in accordance with United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), as ratified by India. The UNCRC states that signatory countries should treatevery child under the age of 18 years in the same manner and not try them as adults. It recommends that thosecountries that treat or propose to treat 16-18 year olds as adult criminals, change their laws to align with theprinciple of non-discrimination towards children. 8) The bill faces criticism for the possible violation of Articles 14, 21 and 20(1) of the Constitution.

German Bakery blast: HC reserves judgment in death confirmation case against Himayat Baig

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A division bench of Justice Naresh Patil and Justice SB Shukhre will deliver their judgment in due course of time against Baig who has also appealed against the judgement.

German Bakery

The Bombay High Court on Monday reserved its judgment in the death confirmation case against the sole convict arrested Himayat Baig for his involvement in the German Bakery bomb blast case of 2010.A division bench of Justice Naresh Patil and Justice SB Shukhre will deliver their judgment in due course of time against Baig who has also appealed against the judgement. Special Public Prosecutor Raja Thackeray has argued for confirming the death sentence by stating that the entire case is based on circumstantial evidence and every circumstance has been proved by relevant records which are of sterling quality. Further, he has argued in favour of the death penalty saying that the trial court reasoning is sound, thus death penalty should be upheld.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Advocate Mehmood Pracha and TW Pathan appearing for Baig have argued that the prosecution evidence is of weak nature and fabricated.Moreover, independent investigations carried out by other agencies like the National Investigation Agency and the Delhi Special Cell have indicated that other accused not before the court were involved in the case. Moreover, two other intervenors have cited several instances of Baigh’s innocence.A Pune court had awarded death penalty to Baig for his involvement in the 2010 German Bakery blast case, after the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) investigated and filed a chargesheet against him. Baig, an alleged member of Indian Mujahideen, was arrested in September 2010. The conviction was handed down in early 2013, in the blast that killed 17people and injured 58, including foreign nationals.The court had found Baig guilty of taking part in the conspiracy and executing the blast.

BJP assures Nirbhaya’s parents over Juvenile Justice Bill

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“We have been assured that Juvenile Justice Bill will be passed in Rajya Sabha today. He (juvenile) would not have been released if this bill had passed six months ago. Be it delayed, but we want this bill to be passed in Parliament,” Nirbhaya’s mother said.

Nirbhaya’s mother Asha Devi

ANI
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday assured disappointed Nirbhaya’s parents that the Juvenile Justice Bill would be on Tuesday passed in the Parliament.”We have been assured that Juvenile Justice Bill will be passed in Rajya Sabha today. He (juvenile) would not have been released if this bill had passed six months ago. Be it delayed, but we want this bill to be passed in Parliament,” Nirbhaya’s mother said.After meeting Nirbhaya’s parents Union Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi asserted that there should not be any delay in the passing of this bill. “We salute the initiative that has been taken by Nirbhaya’s parents. We had listed the Juvenile Justice Bill 12 times in the Monsoon Session but unfortunately, the Parliamentary proceedings could not take place and eventually the bill was not passed,” Naqvi told media after meeting Nirbhaya’s parents.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”So far, we have listed this bill for five times in the ongoing Winter Session. We are confident that this bill would be passed by the Rajya Sabha today. We believe that there should not be any delay to bring a stringent law,” he added.With the Supreme Court showing its inability to prohibit the release of the juvenile in the Nirbhaya gangrape case in the absence of laws, telecom minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had on Monday said the ruling dispensation at the Centre is keen to pass the Juvenile Justice Bill and was also ready to bring supplementary agenda on it in the Parliament.The apex court had dismissed the petition of Delhi Commission of Women (DCW) Chairperson Swati Maliwal against the release of the juvenile offender in the December 16 gang rape case, saying ‘there has to be a clear legislative sanction’ in this regard. Rejecting the DCW’s petition, the apex court earlier said that under existing law detention cannot go beyond three years.

Delhi HC junks PIL seeking freeze on BJP’s lotus symbol

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Lotus represents the manifestation of God, and is also a symbol of purity and tenderness, the plea said.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
The Delhi High Court on Monday refused to entertain a plea seeking freezing of BJP’s election symbol “Lotus” on the ground that it “represents the manifestation of God” and its use during elections was “illegal”.”There is no public interest involved in it,” a bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath said.”You (petitioner) came after 35 years,” the court said, adding that “this was done long back in 1980, since then what were you doing”.The court also took into consideration the submissions made by the counsel for central government, advocate Nagender Benipal, who said that similar petitions have been dismissed by the high court earlier, which was later upheld by the Supreme Court.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The NGO, in its plea said, “Direct respondent no.1 and 2 (Ministry of Law and Justice and Election Commission of India) to remove Lotus from list of free and unrestricted symbol of poll panel as well as from the election symbol of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the interest of national Justice.”Lotus represents the manifestation of God, and is also a symbol of purity and tenderness, the plea added.

Govt using Juvenile Bill to deflect attention from DDCA row, says Kirti Azad

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Kirti Azad accused the government of making a “clever” attempt to defame the opposition.

BJP MP Kirti Azad outside Parliament, New Delhi, on December 18, 20, 2015.

PTI
Congress has accused government of playing “brazen mischief” by proposing to bring the unlisted Juvenile Justice Bill in Rajya Sabha on Monday, alleging it was to “defame the opposition” and divert attention from DDCA issue.”Let them not do this mischief. This is a total brazen mischief on the part of the government…. This is only to divert the attention of the opposition from raising other issues, about DDCA,” Ghulam Nabi Azad said after Congress disrupted proceeding in both the Houses demanding resignation of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for alleged graft in Delhi and District Cricket Association.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Asked if Congress will support the bill, the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha said, “Yes, we have said bring it tomorrow. Let them bring it tomorrow.” He added that supporting is not the question. “The question is it should come before the House. There are 27 opposition parties and we will discuss it tomorrow,” he said.Azad accused the government of making a “clever” attempt to defame the opposition.”You see the cleverness. This is called cleverness. Bring it tomorrow because it is not listed. It is an after-thought. This is only to divert the attention of the opposition from raising other issues, about DDCA, so that we do not raise the DDCA issue. Bring the Juvenile Justice Bill, so that they will be abused left and right by mediapersons. Please don’t get into that trap,” he said outside Parliament.The Leader of Opposition said he told the government at the all party meeting to bring this Bill before the House, but it was not listed in today’s business.”Now it is an after-thought, so that the opposition does not rake up the issue of the Finance Minister. So they said it is OK we will bring up this bill and pass this also. Just to defame the opposition,” he said.Asking government to bring the Juvenile Justice bill tomorrow, Azad said the SC/ST Bill should be brought today as it is listed. He said whatever is listed today in the original list will be passed and asked for bringing the Juvenile Justice bill on Tuesday. The Juvenile Justice Bill was included in supplementary list of business today.

Nirbhaya Case: Centre says Juvenile Justice Amendment Law is ‘high priority’

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‘On behalf of the Central Government, we were specifically asked as to what our stand is. Keeping in mind the interest of the society and the issue of juvenile himself, we submitted that we are in favour of purposive interpretation of the law in such a fashion that it could be adopted to ensure that the society is not endangered also to assure the safety of the juvenile,’ she added.

Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Pinky Anand, who appeared for the Centre in the hearing of the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) plea, on Monday said that Juvenile Justice Amendment Law is a high priority item for the ruling dispensation at the Centre. ‘The arguments put by the petitioner, DCW, were that the law should be interpreted in a fashion which should be in favour of society to say this that until the reform process is completed, till then the juvenile should not walk free in society because it is a danger to society as well as a danger to the juvenile himself,’ Anand told ANI.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>’On behalf of the Central Government, we were specifically asked as to what our stand is. Keeping in mind the interest of the society and the issue of juvenile himself, we submitted that we are in favour of purposive interpretation of the law in such a fashion that it could be adopted to ensure that the society is not endangered also to assure the safety of the juvenile,’ she added.Anand further asserted that on behalf of the Central Government they urged that the Juvenile Justice Amendment Law is before the Rajya Sabha and the attempt was to go through it as quickly as possible. It is a high priority item for the government. It is extremely important that this act should go through as quickly as possible.The apex court earlier on Monday dismissed the petition of DCW Chairperson Swati Maliwal against the release of the juvenile offender in the December 16 gang rape case, saying ‘there has to be a clear legislative sanction’ in this regard. Disappointed with Supreme Court’s decision, Nirbhaya’s parents on Monday said that the women of this country will never get justice.Rejecting the DCW’s petition, the apex court earlier said that under existing law detention cannot go beyond three years. The parents of the victim protested in the national capital yesterday. Hundreds of sympathisers joined them at Rajpath near India Gate to show solidarity. The victim’s mother had said that she wanted justice for her daughter and said steps should have been taken long before to not set him free. Six persons, including the juvenile, had assaulted and raped Nirbhaya in a moving bus in south Delhi on December 16, 2012. The victim succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital. Four of the accused were awarded death penalty by the trial court which was later confirmed by the Delhi High Court. Their appeals are pending before the Supreme Court. Another accused, Ram Singh, had allegedly committed suicide in Tihar Jail in 2013.

Nirbhaya case | Black day for women of country: Maliwal on Supreme Court plea dismissal

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“It is a black day for women in history of the country. I also believe that the Rajya Sabha has cheated the country by keeping the law pending which could have facilitated stronger punishment for juveniles in heinous crimes,” the chief of Delhi Commission for Women told reporters outside the Supreme Court.

DCW chief Swati Maliwal on Monday termed it a “black day” for women after the Supreme Court dismissed her last-minute plea against the release of juvenile convict in December 16 gangrape case and said the country has been “cheated” as a proposed law which could have allowed stronger punishment to him remains pending in Rajya Sabha.”It is a black day for women in history of the country. I also believe that the Rajya Sabha has cheated the country by keeping the law pending which could have facilitated stronger punishment for juveniles in heinous crimes,” the chief of Delhi Commission for Women told reporters outside the Supreme Court.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>She was referring to the bill to amend the Juvenile Justice Act which remains stuck in the Rajya Sabha. The proposed amendment bill seeks stringent punishment for children aged 16-18 years involved in heinous crimes.”The judges told me that they share our concerns but there is no provision to subvert the existing law. I think the time for candle marches is over and women should pick up mashaals (torches) instead to demand for justice,” Maliwal added.Hours before the juvenile was to be freed from an observation home on completion of his three year term at Majnu Ka Tila, Maliwal had moved the Supreme Court on the intervening night of Saturday and Sunday in a last-ditch effort to try and stall the release.In its post midnight order, the Supreme Court had declined to stop the release of the juvenile offender and posted the matter before a vacation bench to be heard on Monday.Amid continued protest by the victim’s parents, the juvenile convict was yesterday released and sent to an NGO at an undisclosed destination with police no longer guarding him.The Supreme Court today dismissed Maliwal’s plea saying “there has to be a clear legislative sanction” in this regard.The vacation bench comprising justices A K Goel and U U Lalit’s bench also did not agree with the submission that the juvenile offender can be subjected to the reformation process for a further period of two years under the juvenile law.

Nirbhaya case: It is important not to be swayed by public opinion, says expert

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The juvenile involved in the December 16 gang rape was released by authorities on Sunday.

Delhi police officers escort the juvenile accused of rape, outside the Juvenile justice board in New Delhi on Saturday.
Manit Balmiki
dna
Raj (19)I started doing drugs when I was still in school. It began with bidis and cigarettes, though I soon graduated to the heavy stuff and got hooked onto smack (heroin). I then took to a life of crime to support my smack habit. Nobody told me that what I was doing was wrong. I came from a broken family and was uneducated. The law finally caught up with me and I was arrested for stealing and pick-pocketing. Since I was an addict, I was referred to and enrolled in a de-addiction programme at the Society for Promotion of Youth and Masses (SPYM). It was difficult at first, but I am clean now. I work here at the Sewa Kutir full-time cooking in the canteen. My next aim is to make amends with my family, it will be a slow process but I will persevere.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Rahul (23)My father who was a habitual substance abuser threw my mother and my sisters out of the house, I soon followed. Life on the street was tough and I did what one has to survive. My drug habit compelled me to steal. I would sometimes used a knife to get what I wanted. I was caught by the police in 2004 and sent to a detention centre. At the same time I lost my mother, I remember I was not given leave to attend her funeral. My situation and my environment was such that I did not know any better.I am filled with regret. To atone myself, I now help and volunteer at a de-addiction centre. I counsel those who walk in the centre and help wean them off drugs if that’s what they want.(names of the juveniles have been changed to protect their identity) The juvenile involved in the December 16 gang rape was released by authorities on Sunday. His release was marked by protests and a last ditch midnight appeal by the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) to delay his release, which was overturned by the vacation bench at wee hours of Sunday In a stark contrast to the current public sentiments, various experts and welfare officials are of the opinion that rehabilitation and reformation of a juvenile is possible under most circumstances. As the debate for the Juvenile Justice Act, 2000 rages on in the public and Parliament, Enakshi Ganguly Thukral, co-founder of Haq – Centre for Child Rights says, “When one considers penalties for a juvenile, it is important not to be swayed by public opinion. One must consider and keep the offender as the primary focus and not the offence.” According to a social worker at SPYM, “It costs Rs3,000 per day to do smack, that makes it Rs90,000 per month. A child on the street hooked on drugs has no option but to take to crime to support this habit,” he added. According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), the incidence of juvenile crime was 0.5 per cent in 2001, and the number rose to 1.1 per cent in 2011. However, the NCRB statistics attribute this rise in figures mainly due to the increase of the upper ages of juveniles from 16 years to 18 years according to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2000. Another reason for the increase can be credited to the addition of 11 new special and local laws added to the list in 2014. Though there is much furore about the rise in crime, statistics also show that there has been a decrease in violent crimes among juveniles in the year 2014. “When a child is deprived of his basic needs, he takes to crime. We have thus economically empowered children who have come in conflict with the law,” says Father Anthony, founder of Empowerment of Child Human rights Organisation (ECHO). Father Anthony has more than 15 years of experience towards understanding juvenile delinquency. “In my experience, I have achieved 100 per cent success rate with juvenile reformation and rehabilitation,” says he. His work with the juveniles have created successful customs officers, traffic police assistants and some are even working in multi-national organisations and jewellery stores. There are around 33,000 juveniles in the system. According to statistics, juveniles are responsible for less than 5 per cent of all rapes. Atiya Bose, Director of a Mumbai-based NGO Aangan feels that “The main issue and the reason why rehabilitation is important for young people is because they are amenable to reform. I have seen huge changes in juveniles when one has worked with them comprehensively on all fronts that includes a combination of a support system.” Bose went on to add that “Juveniles who commit crimes serve the punishment as metted out to them according to the law. Should they then be vilified and damned for life?” Short staff board While the Juvenile Justice Board has been in existence for a while, there does not seem a concerted or well thought out programme. It is understaffed and not enough resources have been allocated for the welfare of children who come in conflict with the law. With public sentiments swaying opinions, experts feel the main issue is being lost in the noise.

Nirbhaya case: Parents hold protest demanding stay on juvenile’s release, say SC hearing of no use

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Nirbhaya”s father also stressed that there is no point of hearing on the matter in the Supreme Court on Monday, while the convict will be freed today.

Nirbhaya’s mother

ANI
With the juvenile convict in the December 16 gang rape and murder case all set to walk free on Sunday, the victim’s parents wanted justice and demanded stay on the convict’s release.”I just want justice, I want stay on his (juvenile convict) release. Hearing is just to mislead the people. They (DCW) tried in night. They might have been able to stop the release if they had tried during the day,” said Nirbhaya”s mother.”We had gone there to demand justice but we were harassed. What happens to their force when women suffer on the roads? Why don”t they stop crime then? The government and the police do not bother about it. The common people will suffer,” she added.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Nirbhaya”s father also stressed that there is no point of hearing on the matter in the Supreme Court on Monday, while the convict will be freed today.”Not only in India, but also abroad, people do not want his release, as he had not done the act of a juvenile. The Prime Minister has the power to stop his release, but no one is taking any action,” he said.Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has decided to hear the plea of the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) against the release of the juvenile in the rape case on Monday, ruling out that there will be no stay on his release.DCW chief Swati Maliwal reached the Supreme Court last night after DCW decided to file a Special Leave Petition (SLP) in the apex court to stall the release of the convict.Related Read: Nirbhaya case: DCW chief Maliwal writes to Juvenile Justice Board asking them not release convictThe parents of the victim held a protest at Jantar Mantar. They had earlier decided to hold the protest at the India Gate, but because of the imposition of Section 144 in the area, they were not allowed.The convict, who is now 20-years-old and was known to be the most brutal of the attackers, has been taken to an undisclosed location from a correction home in North Delhi amid concerns that there was a threat to his life.Earlier, the parents of the gangrape victim, along with students and activists were detained by the police as they staged a protest against the release of the juvenile convict. The police action was condemned by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. In December 2012, the teenager was part of the six member gang that lured a 23-year-old trainee physiotherapist and her male friend onto a bus, where the girl was gruesomely raped and her companion brutally beaten. The girl subsequently succumbed to her injuries 13 days later in Singapore. The incident caused nationwide outrage and led to widespread outpouring of anger against the rapists, including the teenager.

Nirbhaya case: Subramanian Swamy not in favour of releasing juvenile convict

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BJP leader Subramanian Swamy had earlier filed a Public-Interest Litigation (PIL) before the High Court to extend the stay of the juvenile.

Subramanian Swamy

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy on Sunday asserted that the juvenile convict should not be released as a free person till management committee decides whether he is mentally sound and whether he has been socially main streamed. “The High Court judgment is correct that the law says three years and no way that any High Court or Supreme Court can change that. But the issue is that there are other provisions that have to be acted upon before he is formally released as a free man. According to the rules, he can”t be released till a management committee decides whether he is mentally sound”He was supposed to release yesterday but he has not been released, Management committee has up to two years to decide. So, he will be under controlled movement for two more years,” Swamy told ANI in Delhi.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Related Read: Nirbhaya case: DCW chief Maliwal writes to Juvenile Justice Board asking them not release convict “DCW has filed the petition at night, why so late ” I don”t think there is any way in the present laws to keep him in custody of the juvenile justice board. He has to be kept under chains in some forms by using the rules. That the best I can say,” he added. BJP leader Subramanian Swamy had earlier filed a Public-Interest Litigation (PIL) before the High Court to extend the stay of the juvenile, claiming that there was no proof he had been “reformed” and that intelligence reports had said he was being “radicalised” while in detentionDelhi Commission for Women chief Swati Maliwal late on Saturday filed a Special Leave Petition in the Supreme Court against the release of the juvenile convict in Nirbhaya gangrape case. The apex court has decided to hear the petition on Monday.The convict in Nirbhaya gang rape case is now 20 years old. He was a juvenile in 2012 when he committed the heinous crime along with his friends in a moving bus in the capital. The court found him guilty of raping and assaulting the victim, who later died in hospital, along with five accomplices. Due to being a juvenile when the crime was committed, he was tried under the Juvenile Justice Act and was ordered to be kept in a remand home for three years. The convict, to be the most brutal of the attackers, has been taken to an undisclosed location from a correction home in North Delhi amid concerns that there was a threat to his life. He is scheduled to be released today.Meanwhile, K Kavitha of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) said the juvenile’s release could not be stopped.

Nirbhaya case: Everyone in India is against release of the convict, says DCW Chief Swati Maliwal

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Everybody has their hands tied, until the Juvenile Justice Act is amended.

DCW chief Swati Maliwal

dna Research & Archives
The Supreme Court has decided to hear the plea of the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) against the release of the juvenile in the December 16 gang rape case on Monday, ruling out that there will be no stay on his release.DCW chief Swati Maliwal reached the Supreme Court, Saturday night, after DCW decided to file a Special Leave Petition (SLP) in the apex court to stall the release of the convict.”I strongly feel that the Supreme Court has seen merit and that is why the Supreme Court was open at 2 o’ clock in the night. This petition of Delhi Commission of Women against release of the juvenile and rapist in Nirbhaya’s case has been accepted, and it has been listed as item number three on Monday. I am hopeful because the kind of matter we have, the Supreme Court will take cognizance and will rule in our favour,” said Maliwal.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”I think the case is subjudiced now, so I don’t think this man can now walk free on Sunday. We will be bringing this particular issue that this case is now subjudiced to the notice of all the authorities concerned, including the Juvenile Justice Board. There will be a proper discussion and debate in the Supreme Court and then take a decision on this account,” she added.She urged President Pranab Mukherjee, Chief Justice of India TS Thakur and the Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) to intervene in the matter.”I also met Vice-President Hamid Ansari ji and I realized that everybody is finding their hands absolutely tight and until I go into a SLP in the Supreme Court, nothing will happen,” she said.Maliwal further said that each and every person is against the release of the convict, however, everyone is feeling tied down by the Juvenile Justice Act.”The Act is there for the protection of children and it is an important piece of legislation. But it needs to be amended a little, for which we are trying,” she added.The convict, who is now 20 years old and was known to be the most brutal of the attackers, has been taken to an undisclosed location from a correction home in North Delhi amid concerns that there was a threat to his life.Earlier, the parents of the gang rape victim, along students and activists were detained by the police as they staged a protest against the release of the juvenile convict. The police action was condemned by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.In December 2012, the teenager was part of the six member gang that lured a 23-year-old trainee physiotherapist and her male friend onto a bus, where the girl was gruesomely raped and her companion brutally beaten. The girl subsequently succumbed to her injuries 13 days later in Singapore.The incident caused nationwide outrage and led to widespread outpouring of anger against the rapists, including the teenager.

Supreme Court stays UP Lokayukta’s swearing-in

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The order came from a bench comprising Justices AK Goel and UU Lalit which took cognisance of a PIL filed against the appointment on Saturday morning.

The appointment of the UP Lokayukta, caught in a tortuous tangle since April last year, took another startling turn as the Supreme Court stayed the oath of the new incumbent on Saturday. Ironically, it was an unprecedented order of the apex court itself which had paved way for the new appointment.The order came from a bench comprising Justices AK Goel and UU Lalit which took cognisance of a PIL filed against the appointment on Saturday morning. The PIL contended that the apex court had unilaterally announced the name of Justice Virendra Singh Yadav as the new Lokayukta on Wednesday, but the order was based on incomplete and misleading information given by the state government’s counsel Kapil Sibal.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>“I filed the PIL this morning pleading that it be heard on Saturday itself as it would become infructuous if the oath was administered to Justice Yadav on Sunday morning as scheduled,” the petitioner Sachidanand Gupta told dna. “My PIL is based on the letter sent by the Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court to the Governor on Thursday, excerpts of which have appeared in newspapers,” he added.The High Court CJ had reportedly stated that Justice Yadav’s name had already been scrapped, and that the apex court had been given false information regarding the names which were discussed by the three-member selection committee, comprising the CM and the Leader of Opposition besides himself, on Tuesday and Wednesday. The panel had discussed five candidates but a different list was submitted to the Supreme Court on Wednesday.In a surprising move, the apex court opened on a Saturday and heard the petition at 4.30pm. After initial arguments, the bench ruled that the matter would be heard when the court reopens on January 4. The administration of oath to Justice Yadav has been stayed till the time the petition is decided.UP Lokayukta tangle – The TimelineMarch 2012 – Lokayukta Justice (retd.) NK Mehrotra completed six-year term, granted two years’ extension the same day by Akhilesh Yadav the day he is sworn in as CMMarch 2014 – The extension also ends, but Lokayukta continues in officeApril 2014 – Hearing a PIL, Supreme Court asks UP to appoint new Lokayukta in six monthsJuly 2015 – Apex court orders state to make the appointment in 30 days; state govt. bent upon appointing its handpicked man; Governor thwarts the move, returns the file four timesAug 2015 – UP govt. amends Lokayukta Act to keep HC CJ out of the appointment process Sep 2015 – After Governor refuses to accept this Bill, the government agrees to go by the old unamended Act.Sep 2015 – CJ refuses to go along, demanding that the amendment Bill be withdrawn firstDec 14, 2015 – Apex court asks UP to appoint Lokayukta in two daysDec 16 – With state still vacillating, appoints Lokayukta, setting a historical precedent Dec 18 — Governor announces his oath to be held on Dec 20Dec 19 — SC stays oath, next hearing on Jan 4

A juvenile needs support system to lead normal life: Experts

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Youths protest against the release of juvenile in Nirbhaya case
Manit
dna
A day before the juvenile convicted in the December 16 gang-rape of a young paramedic Jyoti Singh, known as Nirbhaya, is to be released after three years in a remand home in New Delhi, a protest led by the victim’s parents erupted outside the home. It culminated, on Saturday evening, in the detention of Nirbhaya’s parents and others by the Delhi police, even as the former juvenile was shifted from his north Delhi correctional institute to an “undisclosed location” outside the capital. Sources said the juvenile has been kept under observation of an NGO under protection of Delhi Police amid concerns that there is threat to his life.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal angrily tweeted that he was shocked at the police action and had asked the chief secretary to talk to the police commissioner. Later in the evening, Jyoti’s parents were released.The protest was another symptom of the anxiety gripping the capital over the juvenile’s release. A recent demonstration held by certain civil society groups and the Centre for Social Research spoke out strongly against his release, asking for proof that he had “reformed”. They also asked for protection for Jyoti’s parents.Delhi Commission for Women chairperson Swati Maliwal wrote to the President Pranab Mukherjee, Chief Justice of India TS Thakur and the Principal Magistrate of the Juvenile Justice Board, Murari Prasad Singh, asking for a stay on the boy’s release.Amidst this furore, there have been some voices asking people to give the justice system a chance, especially in the light of the after care provision where the boy would be monitored periodically for two years. This provision is for those who are recognised as no longer in conflict with the law but are in need of care and protection till they get back on their feet. A senior officer with one of the city’s remand homes told dna that this includes providing accommodation with a group of peers, certain financial support till the person in question is able to provide for themselves.The officer added, based on his experience of dealing with juveniles, that everything a child becomes is formed by the society they have grown up in, all what they have been exposed to. Whether they are in an observational home for a few days in judicial custody, or a remand home for a few years after conviction, no amount of counselling and intervention will help unless they have a support system when they go out.”Though we have engaged mental health experts to understand the children’s’ psyche, what they’re dealing with, they go back to same, unchanged, circumstances outside the institute,” said the officer. “They find that what they have been taught and counselled on doesn’t work in these communities. They and their parents need support systems, so they know who to turn to when they need help. Right now, they don’t have that, and their families have no resources to get them help.”Children don’t realise the consequence of the habits they pick up, till they turn into addictions, the officer added, or criminal behaviour. Often they are trapped by their circumstances. We can teach them, said the officer, to recognise their mistakes, and right from wrong, so that hopefully they will be able to choose their path outside.However, counselling has shown to help these juveniles settle into law-abiding lives after they leave these correctional facilities.Bharti Ali, co-founder of the NGO HAQ: Centre for Child Rights, said that with minimal counselling they had been able to reduce the rate of repeat offenses to half, in the cases they dealt with. This juvenile too, she added, had received counselling, but could have got more. “He was witness to something extremely brutal on 16 December, and he needed help getting over that,” she said.Both Ali and the officer refrained from commenting on what would happen to the former juvenile after his release. Ali did add that the society needed to have “faith” in the juvenile justice system, and in the state’s claim that it would monitor his mental health.

Nirbhaya’s parents and 40 students released after short detention by Delhi Police

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Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal termed the detention as “unacceptable” and said he has asked Chief Secretary KK Sharma to talk to Police Commissioner BS Bassi to secure the release of the victim’s parents.

ABVP activists along with Nirbhayas parents staging a protest against the release of juvenile delinquent in Nirbhaya Case, in New Delhi on Saturday.

PTI
Parents of the December 16 gangrape victim along with 40 DU and JNU students were detained by the police on Saturday as they staged a protest against the release of the juvenile convict in the case. The father of the victim said that they had gathered for a peaceful demonstration against the release of the juvenile convict but the police detained them.”Is there no justice in this country?” he asked.However, police said that the parents were “not detained” but just removed from the road “for their safety”.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We detained around 40 youths who had blocked a stretch on the Outer Ring Road but the parents of the victim were not detained. They were removed from the road for their safety, put on a van and brought to the operation cell in Maurice Nagar and later we arranged for their transportation to be taken back home,” said DCP (North) Madhur Verma.Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal termed the detention as “unacceptable” and said he has asked Chief Secretary KK Sharma to talk to Police Commissioner BS Bassi to secure the release of the victim’s parents.However, the father of the victim accused the Delhi government of trying to shield the convict, who has now turned 20.The protesters staged the demonstration at the Outer Ring Road stretch near the correction home, where the juvenile convict was put up, and allegedly blocked the road causing traffic congestion in the area.Also read: DCW reaches out to SC as a last-ditch attempt to stop juvenile convict’s releaseMembers of Delhi University Students Union (DUSU) and Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union (JNUSU) had earlier staged a protest at Jantar Mantar demanding the convict juvenile should not be released. Later, the students along with the victim’s parents held a protest outside the juvenile home and shouted slogans that the government should take immediate steps to stop his release.Nirbhaya’s mother Asha Devi today said, “Prime Minister travels the world, but there is no law for women here. Everyone promises change but nothing has been done.””We have been waiting for justice for three years. The government and judiciary have given up on us. Rapists have been given a report card that you can rape and you will give you machine and money and will protect you by forming a committee,” he said.

Intolerance issue was part of motivated campaign: Jitendra Singh

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Lashing out at some of the litterateurs and artists, who recently returned their awards, Singh said that a true writer or artist will never think of returning award and try to live up to the credentials of the award bestowed upon him.

Jitendra Singh (BJP)

The issue of ‘intolerance’ was part of a motivated campaign as the minorities in the country were safer under the Narendra Modi-led government, Union minister Jitendra Singh said on Saturday.”The controversies in the name of intolerance are a part of a motivated campaign, and never before the minorities were so safe as they are now under the Narendra Modi regime,” Singh, Minister of State in the PMO, said while addressing public meeting in R S Pura today. After the Modi government took over at the Centre, a number of independent news agencies had put forth the inference that the Muslim community felt most safe under the BJP-led regime because it was more sensitive to their sensibilities, he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The present government and the BJP follows a policy of “justice for all, appeasement to none” based on the principles of equality and true secularism, in contrast to the political parties for whom secularism is practiced by convenience, he said. Lashing out at some of the litterateurs and artists, who recently returned their awards, Singh said that a true writer or artist will never think of returning award and try to live up to the credentials of the award bestowed upon him.”It is for this reason that immediately after independence, a number of eminent writers from minority community came forward to constitute Progressive Writers Forum and opposed the partition of sub-continent,” he said.Singh announced setting up of a Kendriya Vidyalaya in the vicinity and said a proposal will be submitted for establishing a Government of India-aided skill development center to generate employment for the youth.He assured the local MLA of all support to get the bottlenecks cleared for pending works like construction of Panchayat Ghar and upgradation of local High school which pertains to the state government. Lauding the role of minorities, particularly the Sikh community, for standing up bravely for the cause of Jammu during the times of adversity, Singh said that the Labana community comprises an essential component of the state’s social fabric and he will take up their demand for Other Backward Community (OBC) status with Centre whenever their representatives visit Delhi.

MPs unite to defeat Bill to amend Section 377

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Criticising the attitude of MPs, a Bangalore-based NGO Sangama, working for the sexual and gender minorities, said that no responsible Parliament should ignore the harassment and persecution of sexual minorities on account of outdated and archaic Section 377.

While the Juvenile Justice Bill continues to languish in Rajya Sabha over a year now, Lok Sabha on Friday shot down an effort by Congress MP Shashi Tharoor to legalise gay sex through a private member’s Bill at the introduction stage itself. The MPs prevented any discussion aimed at dropping Section 377 from the Indian Penal Code (IPC) of 1860 that criminalises homosexuality. The ruling BJP members pressed for division to flung out the Bill and scored victory as its introduction was disallowed by a majority of 71 as against 24 voting for it. Tharoor tweeted: “Surprising to see such intolerance.”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Criticising the attitude of MPs, a Bangalore-based NGO Sangama, working for the sexual and gender minorities, said that no responsible Parliament should ignore the harassment and persecution of sexual minorities on account of outdated and archaic Section 377.Shashi Tharoor also said he was only fulfilling the Supreme Court’s wish in a ruling in December 2013, leaving it up to Parliament to remove the obnoxious Section from the statute. In a Twitter post, the former Union minister said: “Intro of Pvt. Member’s Bill 2 decriminalize consensual sex btwn consenting adults defeated in LS 71-24. Surprising to see such intolerance.” He said: “Notice of intent to oppose introduction of Bill came so late, there was no time 2 rally support.”In yet another tweet, he said: “We weren’t at passage. It was just “leave to introduce the bill” that was rejected by the intolerant. They couldn’t even debate!” He is, however, not dejected by defeat of his attempt as he tweeted further: “Will try again in future. We shall overcome!” Tharoor, however, found no resistance to two other private member’s Bills he introduced on Friday, one to amend the IPC to substitute a new section for Section 124A on sedition and another Asylum to protect refugees and asylum seekers and to determine their cases. In a landmark judgment in 2009, the Delhi High Court had stuck down Section 377 of the IPC as “unconstitutional” and decriminalised consensual sex among adult homosexual men. The Supreme Court, however, overturned the verdict on 12.12.2013 to re-legalise Section 377 while putting the ball in the government’s court, arguing that it was free to annul the law through legislation.Section 377 deals with “unnatural offences” and says “whoever voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal, shall be punished with [imprisonment for life], or with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to ten years, and shall also be liable to fine.Rajesh Umadevi, director of Sangama said the retention of Section 377 was aimed at to harass and persecute sexual minorities, including transgender and various identities. “The insidious danger of Section 377 lies in the fact that it permeates different social settings including the medical establishment, family and the state. It also expressed the deep societal repugnance towards sexual minorities and provided the flag leaf of legitimacy for the harassment of sexual minorities,” he said.

Nirbhaya rape accused to walk free tomorrow

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The victims’ parents, who were present in the court, were crushed and heartbroken upon hearing the order. Visibly moved with tears in eyes, Asha Devi, the mother vowed to carry on the fight for justice.

Nirbhaya’s mother Asha expresses her disappointment after the Delhi High Court refusal to stay release of the juvenile convict on Friday.

PTI
The juvenile convict in the Nirbhaya gangrape case will walk free on Sunday. The Delhi High Court on Friday refused to extend his stay in the observation home saying the Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act, 2000 has stipulated the maximum period of three years. “Having regard to the fact that the maximum stay that can be directed in the Special Home under Section 15(1) of the Act is three years and that the respondent No.1 (convict) would be completing the period of three years by December 20, 2015, there cannot be any direction to continue his stay in the Special Home beyond December 20, 2015. Hence, we decline to issue any direction as prayed by the petitioner,” a bench headed by Chief Justice G Rohini said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The victims’ parents, who were present in the court, were crushed and heartbroken upon hearing the order. Visibly moved with tears in eyes, Asha Devi, the mother vowed to carry on the fight for justice. BJP leader Subramaniam Swamy, the petitioner in the case, was seen consoling the parents in the courtroom, assuring them that he has not given up. “This fight is not just for your daughter alone, it is now for the nation,” Swamy said. Two days ago, the victims’ parents had staged a demonstration at Jantar Mantar here protesting against the release of the juvenile. At that time, the mother had said she would continue her fighting till the very last moment. In its order, the high court also directed the Juvenile Justice Board to take a final decision on his rehabilitation and the management committee of the Delhi government would keep a watch on him for two years as per the Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Rules. The convict, who is now 21, is to release on December 20 after his three years stay in the observation home as part of the sentence for the offence of rape. The bench directed Juvenile Justice Board (JJB-II) shall interact with the juvenile his parents/guardians as well as the officials concerned of the department of women and child development, Delhi government regarding the “post-release rehabilitation and social mainstreaming” of the juvenile and pass appropriate orders in accordance with the provisions of the JJB Act and Rules. It referred to the Rules 55 which makes it mandatory for the Management Committee to consider and review periodically post-release or post restoration follow up. Rule 65 also provides for a detailed procedure of restoration of the juvenile back to the family and the follow-up action by the Juvenile Justice Board. The bench also recorded the Rule which restrains the JJ Board from sending the juvenile to his family in case he is reluctant to go home. According to the Rule, a quarterly follow-up report to the JJB by the concerned Child Welfare Officer or Probation Officer or the non-governmental organization for a period of two years. The bench, however, never closed the petition saying the issue raised by the petitioner is “of public importance” which needs deeper consideration. The court has to ascertain the factum of reformation of the juveniles in conflict with law before they are released from the Special Home on expiry of the period of stay ordered by the Juvenile Justice Board (JJB). The court sought response from the Centre and Delhi government to file response on the issue within eight weeks, while posting the matter for March 28, 2016. The court’s order came on Swamy’s plea against the release of the “unreformed” juvenile convict. He cited the Intelligence Bureau (IB) report about him having been radicalised after being shifted with a juvenile apprehended in connection with the Delhi High Court blast case. The Centre had told the court that juvenile’s stay in an observation home should be extended till all aspects including mental health and post-release rehabilitation plans are considered by the authorities. The juvenile, who was under 18 when arrested for brutal rape and murder of a para-medical student on December 16, 2012, was tried under the Juvenile Justice Act. He was ordered to be kept in a remand home for three years.Swamy in his plea asked the court to pass order that “such unreformed juvenile not be released until it is demonstrably assured that he has reformed, ceased to be radicalised and is not a menace to the society”. Meanwhile, a trial court had awarded death penalty to four rapists which was upheld by the high court. Out of the six convicts, prime accused Ram Singh was found dead in Tihar Jail and the juvenile was sent to reform home.The appeals for four convicts are pending before the Supreme Court.

Section 377: Shashi Tharoor sees ‘intolerance’ in BJP over rejection of Bill

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The introduction of the private members’ Bill, which sought amendment to the IPC by seeking to “substitute a new section for Section 377”, was objected to by BJP member Nishikant Dubey, who said he was opposing it not because of any religion, vedas or ‘puranas’ but because of the Supreme Court judgement.

Congress MP Shashi Tharoor on Friday saw “intolerance” among a section of the ruling BJP after his move to introduce a Bill for decriminalising homosexuality was rejected in Lok Sabha.The introduction of the private members’ Bill, which sought amendment to the IPC by seeking to “substitute a new section for Section 377”, was objected to by BJP member Nishikant Dubey, who said he was opposing it not because of any religion, vedas or ‘puranas’ but because of the Supreme Court judgement. Reacting to the development, Tharoor said, “It strikes me as extremely intolerant because at this stage, it’s a very routine procedure.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”I begged to introduce the Bill. It is extremely unfortunate for a Bill to be rejected, even for introduction and it shows, I am sorry to say, the degree of intolerance that exists in sections of our ruling party.” The Congress leader and former Union Minister said he “will move the Bill again when the session is convened next to ensure individual privacy is possible”. The bulk of the votes opposing “even the introduction of the Bill” came from BJP, claimed Tharoor, although he also noted that there were “some members” of the ruling party who “seemed to have” voted to allow him to introduce it.The opposition MP said he proposed to amend Section 377 of IPC in order to de-criminalise homosexuality in the wake of the Supreme Court judgement in this connection. The apex court had in 2013 overruled a 2009 decision by Delhi High Court striking down the section and said that it was for the Parliament to decide whether to amend or delete it and not the judiciary. Saying that “it is not the government’s responsibility to decide how people behave in their private life”, the Thiruvananthapuram MP said, “I have not proposed the deletion; I have just proposed amendment and the purpose of the same is to ensure consensual sex between consenting adults will be legally possible. That is, we will keep the government out of our bedroom.”There is a need now to look “very, very critically” at how the public sees this issue, he further averred while seeking a public debate on the issue. “That there are so many people in the ruling party present on the government benches who are expressing their intolerance and homophobia in this manner is very revelatory,” he charged. “After all, what we are talking about is human freedom, human privacy, human dignity,” he added.Tharoor expressed confidence that if the public starts “waking up” to the reality of what is being discussed and what is at stake, he will have at least succeeded in “raising” consciousness about the issue.”In that spirit, today’s defeat will still be a victory for the cause of justice and freedom in our country,” he said.Two other Bills moved by Tharoor, for amending Section 124A of IPC, that covers sedition, and the National Asylum and Refugee Bill, which favours the extension of rights to foreign nationals, were allowed to be introduced in the House.

Rajya Sabha logjam ends but no consensus on GST

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After the hour-long deliberations, Ansari said the meeting was “good”.

Courtesy: Priya Saraf
The logjam in Rajya Sabha was broken on Friday with Opposition agreeing for passage of some bills and allowing its normal functioning on the remaining three days of the Winter session at an all-party meeting convened by Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari, but a consensus eluded GST.After the hour-long deliberations, Ansari said the meeting was “good”.Members from different parties decided to pass the SC ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill, the Appropriation Bills, the Anti Hijacking Bill, the Atomic Energy Amendment Bill, the Commercial Courts Ordinance Bill and the Arbitration and Conciliation Amendment Bill by December 23 when the current session comes to an end, sources said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “nothing new was discussed at this meeting apart from what was discussed earlier at the Business Advisory Committee (BAC) meeting.”When asked whether Congress has agreed to passage of some bills, he said that some of the bills on which his party has committed support like the SC/ST bill will be passed alongwith Appropriation Bill.”There was no discussion on GST. The discussion was on some bills on which there is a general consensus. Everybody is aware that there is no consensus on GST. Not only Congress has some reservations but other parties also ,” Azad said when asked whether any decision on GST was taken in the meeting.The GST bill, which has already been passed by the Lok Sabha, must be passed by the Rajya Sabha by December 23 and then sent to the states for passage to enable the GST regime to be rolled out by April 1, 2016.Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, however, said, “there has been a very meaningful discussion in the meeting. A number of parties have expressed concern over Parliament not functioning.”All of them decided that the House should function. It has been decided to pass the pending government bills even by sitting late,” he said.Asked about the crucial GST bill, Naqvi said that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley made an appeal to the opposition to pass the constitution bill as well in the conducive atmosphere that has emerged after the meeting.”But, I don’t think the main opposition party has an agreement on this,” he said, adding that other opposition parties favour a passage of the bill.Ever since the winter session started on November 26, proceedings in the Rajya Sabha have been disrupted over a variety of issues with Congress accusing the Modi government of “political vendetta” in the wake of the National Herald case. The Arunachal Pradesh imbroglio and Union Minister V K Singh’s ‘dog’ remarks also triggered uproar in the House.It was also decided that three bills – the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Amendment Bill, the Whistle Blowers Protection Amendment Bill and the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill – will be discussed during the remaining period but the course of action will be decided upon later.Opposition wants two bills including the Whistle Blowers Protection Bill to be referred to a Select Committee.During the meeting it was also decided that discussions on matters of public importance like price rise, impact of flood and drought on agriculture, intolerance and a discussion on the developments in Arunachal Pradesh will also be taken up during the last three days.Naqvi said that members have agreed to compensate for the loss of legislative business in the House by working for extra hours.Asked if the issue of giving more powers to Rajya Sabha Chairman to act against members disrupting the House was discussed at the meeting, he replied in the negative.The meeting also saw Naresh Gujral (SAD) asking both the major parties BJP and Congress to sort out the differences among them to avoid disruptions in Parliament.After the meeting, Deputy Chairman P J Kurien said,”the Rajya Sabha was not functioning till today, except that we passed one bill and some other intervention took place. The Chairman was very disturbed and anguished over this. Many of us share that feeling and seeing that there are only three more days left, called a meeting of the leaders of all parties.”Kurien said that through that meeting Ansari expressed his anguish and also urged members to pass at least those bills for which there is general consensus and agreement.”He also listed such bills. About six bills he listed and appealed to the leaders that they should cooperate in running the House smoothly and in disposing of these bills and the leaders of all parties responded favourably and positively.”Therefore it was decided that on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 2 to 4 pm these bills will be taken and 4 pm onwards there are certain issues over which the members are agitated and those issues will be taken up and the House may sit beyond 6 pm for disposing those discussions,” Kurien said.The Bills on which there is broad agreement are SC/ST bill anti hijacking bill, appropriation bills, attomic energy bill, commercial courts Ordinance and the Arbitration and Conciliation Bill.”In addition to that three bills we will be taking up, Child labour bill, whistleblower bill and juvenile justice bill, these bills will be taken up and they will be discussed and disposed of or may be sent to select committee as the House decides,” Kurien said.

Bar is the mother of judges, says CJI

Sometimes the judiciary comes under criticism (Nukta cheen) and the judges do not come forward to defend themselves. If there is somebody who can defend them is the bar, Justice Thakur said without referring to any specific instance.

Chief Justice of India (CJI) T S Thakur said Bar is the “mother” of the judges, and the lawyers know everything about the judges and when the judiciary faces criticism, the bar is to stand up to defend the system.”Sometimes the judiciary comes under criticism (Nukta cheen) and the judges do not come forward to defend themselves. If there is somebody who can defend them is the bar,” Justice Thakur said without referring to any specific instance.Inaugurating the commencement of 125 anniversary celebration of the Tis Hazari Court bar association which is otherwise known as Delhi Bar Association (DBA), Justice Thakur addressed the lawyers in Hindi with extensive use of Urdu words.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He said, “Judiciary is the strongest and highly respected organs of a democratic set up. Lawyers’ body is the mother of judges. The lawyers know all secrets of the judges. The bar only comes forward to defend the judges for any kind of criticism they face.”Justice Thakur, who is popular among the lawyers for his Sher O Shayari, also cited couplets of Urdu poet Ghalib, and urged the lawyers not to go on strike causing inconvenience to the litigants.He said for smooth functioning of judiciary, the lawyers should co-operate the court by not resorting to strike to achieve their demands before the government.He also sought the lawyers to come forward and render their service pro-bono for poor litigants.Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia, who was also present on the occasion, assured the lawyers that AAP government will make efforts to provide the lawyers social security, health and housing scheme as urged by the DBA from the state.

Jayalalithaa writes to PM Modi, seeks Rs 1,550 crore for scholarships to SC, ST students

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r. She has mentioned in the letter that the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment could not disburse the amount due to insufficient fund allocation to it.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J.Jayalalithaa on Thursday sought the release of central share of Rs. 1550 crores towards disbursement of post matric scholarships to students belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the state. In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, she has said the amount includes arrears of last year. She has mentioned in the letter that the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment could not disburse the amount due to insufficient fund allocation to it.She has said, to help the poor students to proceed with their post-matric education, the fund needs to be released at the earliest. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>

People who start their careers from lower courts, become complete lawyers: CJI TS Thakur

CJI TS Thakur was present at the inauguration of coffee table book ‘Tis Hazari Nama’ on Thursday.
File Photo

Chief Justice of India T S Thakur on Thursday inaugurated a coffee table book ‘Tis hazari Nama’, prepared by various advocates on the 125th anniversary of the Delhi Bar Association (DBA). The book contains the history of Tis Hazari District Courts, one of the oldest courts in Asia, including details of how it was formed.”People who start their careers in law from lower courts are the ones who become complete lawyers in the end,” Justice TS Thakur said. Apart from Justice Thakur, Supreme Court judge Justice A K Sikri, Chief Justice of Delhi High Court Justice G Rohini, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and various other judges of the high court and district courts were present at the programme here.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Speaking at the function, Justice Rohini remarked that there should be cordial relation between the bar and the bench and a proper balance and understanding is required between the two. She added that in Delhi, the relation between the bar and the bench has always remained cordial barring few incidents.Advocate Sanjeev Nasiar, President of DBA, raised the issue of lawyers’ strike which had recently drawn the attention of the apex court and said 90 per cent of the strikes were done only on two issues– bifurcation of courts and pecuniary jurisdiction of trial courts. He suggested that courts in Delhi should be centralised and there should be no bifurcation and it will also reduce pollution in the national capital.Justice Sikri also raised the issue of lawyers’ strike and sought a promise from the lawyers that there should not be any strike by them in 2016, whereas the issues should be sorted out by way of discussion. The programme marked the attendance of thousands of lawyers.

Arunachal Pradesh political crisis: Gauhati HC stays all proceedings of present Assembly session till Feb 2

Coming down heavily on the notification issued by Governor J P Rajkhowa advancing the session, Justice Hrishikesh Roy observed that prima facie it was in violation of Art 174 and 175 of the Constitution dealing with convening of the session Governor and his message to House.

Rebel Congress MLA Kalikho Pul celebrates with supporters after he was elected as” Chief Minister” by 33 legislators in Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh on Thursday.

PTI
In a new twist to the ongoing political drama, the Gauhati High Court on Thursday kept in abeyance all decisions, including the removal of Arunach Pradesh Assembly Speaker Nebam Rebia, at a special “session” on Thursday, hours after Chief Minister Nabam Tuki was “voted out” and a dissident Congressman was “elected” as CM in a hotel.Coming down heavily on the notification issued by Governor J P Rajkhowa advancing the session, Justice Hrishikesh Roy observed that prima facie it was in violation of Art 174 and 175 of the Constitution dealing with convening of the session Governor and his message to House. The court order came on a writ petition filed by the Speaker challenging the Dec 9 notification issued by the Governor advancing the Assembly session to December 16 from the scheduled day of January 24, 2016.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Earlier today, in a bizarre turn of events, Opposition BJP and rebel Congress MLAs got together in a local hotel to “vote out” the Nabam Tuki-led Congress government in Arunachal Pradesh and to “elect” a rebel Congress MLA as the new “chief minister”. The dramatic development came a day after they “impeached” Speaker Nabam Rebia in a make-shift “Assembly” premises in a community hall.Issuing notice, Justice Hrishikesh Roy kept in abeyance the impugned decisions including the notification issued by the Deputy Speaker restoring the membership of 14 suspended MLAs and the holding of the “session” at a new place and also the decision taken at the “session” yesterday in which the Speaker was removed. The judge allowed petitioner Kapil Sibal to implead the government of Arunachal Pradesh as a party respondent. He posted the case for next hearing on February 1, 2016.Eleven BJP MLAs and two Independent MLAs joined hands with 20 Congress rebels to meet at a conference hall of a hotel here as the Assembly premises have been sealed since Wednesday. Today, a “no confidence” motion moved by BJP MLAs and Independent MLAs was “adopted” with Deputy Speaker T Norbu Thongdok, who is also a rebel Congressman, in the Chair.A total 33 members of the 60-member house, including 20 dissident Congress MLAs, later “elected” another dissident Congressman Kalikho Pul as the new “chief minister” of the state. The Chief Minister Nabam Tuki and his 26 supporting MLAs boycotted the proceedings terming them as “illegal and unconstitutional”.The Chief Minister later wrote to President Pranab Mukherjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking their intervention to “uphold” the Constitution in the face of the “unprecedented murder” of democracy and “bypassing” of a democratically-elected government by Governor Jyoti Prashad Rajkhowa.Angry over the Governor’s action in calling a session of the Assembly bypassing the government the Congress has paralysed the Rajya Sabha for the last two days. MORE PTI UPL Yesterday, a delegation led by Congress President Sonia Gandhi met President Mukherjee in Delhi and lodged a strong protest against Rajkhowa.”It is clear that the BJP top leadership in connivance with some dissident Congress MLAs planned to destabilize the democratically-elected Congress Government in Arunachal Pradesh. This is obviously a pre-planned design involving the highest functionaries of the Central Government in this unprincipled enterprise,” the Congress chief told reporters after handing over a memorandum to the President.On Thursday’s “proceedings” were held in the new venue as the make-shift premises where Speaker Nabam Rebia was ‘impeached’ on Wednesday was vandalised by miscreants and the MLAs opposing Tuki were not allowed to enter the Assembly premises by security forces. As per directive of the Speaker, the district administration has sealed the Assembly premises since Wednesday.The MLAs then with “due consent” from Governor J P Rajkhowa shifted the venue to the conference hall of a in Naharlagun. The “session”, which was chaired by Deputy Speaker T Norbu Thongdok passed the motion by voice vote and signature consent by 33 members in the absence of 26 Congress MLAs including Tuki and his council of ministers.Thongdok announced Pul as the “new Leader of the House” and said that the “proceedings” would be sent to the Governor who would ask the new chief minister and his council of ministers to take the oath of office shortly.

Mohan Bhagwat changes stand, says RSS not in favour of scrapping reservations

Bhagwat, however, stressed on the need to end the discrimination and reject traditions that were redundant.

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat
Arijit Sen
dna
Making a complete U-turn from his previous statement that the quota system needed a review, RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat has said reservation should continue in the country as long as there was social discrimination and asserted that the Sangh was not in favour of scrapping it. “RSS is of the firm opinion that there is no question of scrapping the reservation system. Reservation in the country should continue as long as social discrimination prevails in the Indian society,” Bhagwat said while delivering a lecture on ‘social assimilation’ in Nagpur on Wednesday evening.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Incidentally, Bhagwat’s earlier remarks on seeking review of the reservation policy just before the Bihar Assembly polls had stirred a controversy, with many seeing it as one of the main reasons for BJP’s debacle in the state elections.On ‘social assimilation’, the RSS chief said the beginning should be from self and extended to the immediate family, extended family and the society. “This should be done by respecting the diversity in the society, but following the values and philosophy behind the spirit of Hinduism,” he said.Related Read: RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat pitches for review of reservation policyElaborating the concept of ‘social harmony and integrity’, Bhagwat said, “No religion, sect, social reformer or saint supported discrimination between human beings. Equality has been the essence at the origin of every sect, which was later divided into castes and sects by us. Discrimination also was born out of behaviour of the people.”Bhagwat, however, stressed on the need to end the discrimination and reject traditions that were redundant.”In the name of tradition, this discrimination should not be allowed to continue further. The feelings of those who have suffered for thousands of years, must be understood. Some sections of the society tolerated the discrimination and injustice for a long period,” he opined.”Now, we should also learn to understand and tolerate for some years and bring about the desired change by our own behaviour. Traditions should be tested on modern scientific parameters, and those which fail the tests must be rejected,” he further said.Unfortunately, these traditions have not been tested for thousands of years and are being followed blindly, because of which the values have deteriorated, Bhagwat said.He also spoke about the thoughts of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar on social discrimination and equality and appealed to the people to study it in depth and understand his teachings.

My daughter’s name was Jyoti Singh, declares Nirbhaya’s mother

“We stand for child rights, but it is our right to know whether he has reformed or not,”said Dr Ranjana Kumari, activist and Director, CSR, to dna. She added, “we are against capital punishment and their should be a debate on it. However, one has to go by the law of the land, and according to that, we want the highest punishment for all accused.”

Nirbhaya’s parents Badrinath Singh and Asha Devi

PTI
At a highly charged remembrance meeting for ‘Nirbhaya’ on the third anniversary of the December 16 gangrape, the mother of the victim asked that justice be done for her daughter, and that all accused, including the former juvenile be hanged. Asha Devi also publicly declared Nirbhaya’s name –Jyoti Singh –saying she was “not ashamed to name her”.Organised by a group of citizens calling themselves Justice Seekers, with the involvement of gender rights group Centre for Social Research (CSR), the demonstration brought together many public and political figures to commemorate Jyoti. In a palpably angry atmosphere, most of these big names repeated that justice had not been done, not to Nirbhaya nor to other women attacked and assaulted. The feeling seemed exacerbated by the fact the juvenile accused, now a 21 year old man is set to walk free after three years in a juvenile home.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We stand for child rights, but it is our right to know whether he has reformed or not,”said Dr Ranjana Kumari, activist and Director, CSR, to dna. She added, “we are against capital punishment and their should be a debate on it. However, one has to go by the law of the land, and according to that, we want the highest punishment for all accused.”Former police officer Kiran Bedi, Congresswomen Kiran Walia and Sharmishta Mukherjee, Delhi Commission for Women Swati Maliwal, among others spoke out against the rates of crimes against women and the fact that nothing seemed to have changed in Delhi all these years. Mukherjee called for gender sensitisation at all levels, at home, in schools and offices, Walia pushed for closer monitoring of trials so that delays can be countered.Maliwal brought up cases of minor girls being gangraped as examples of the increasing crime rates, and her own investigations into delhi police data –only 9 accused were convicted in sexual assault cases in 2014 out of 11000 FIRs registered, and in Delhi’s only forensic lab, 1500 samples had gone bad potentially damaging many cases that could be on crimes against women.However, Maliwal was interrupted in her speech by Kumari; it seemed the latter, and other organisers, feared that Maliwal was being too confrontational against other parties.Jyoti’s mother too asked that rape not be politicised, instead her demands be met. All accused be hanged, all cases of sexual assault be fast tracked from the apex court to the lower court and the Nirbhaya fund be used to build more forensic laboratories in Delhi and other states. Kumari added another demand, that Jyoti’s parents be given protection. In the ongoing Parliament session, in Lok sabha, BJP Member of Parliament Hema Malini pronounced her sentence on the juvenile, saying his mind was “devilish”. She asked that he be treated as an adult for his crime as, according to her, he did more harm to Nirbhaya. This fact, though previously reported in the media, has been disputed by women’s groups and child rights’ activists based on the Juvenile Justice Boards’ observations.

Delhi govt to finalise names of Delhi Human Rights Commission chairperson and members

The CJI had on December 10 raised an alarm for Arvind Kejriwal government in the national capital by reminding that Delhi has no state human rights body for last 22 years.

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
Six days after Chief Justice of India T S Thakur pointed to the need of state human rights body in the capital, the AAP government has convened a meeting tomorrow to finalise the names of chairperson and members of Delhi Human Rights Commission.The CJI had on December 10 raised an alarm for Arvind Kejriwal government in the national capital by reminding that Delhi has no state human rights body for last 22 years.In the panel, three candidates – Justice Uma Nath Singh (Chief Justice of High Court of Meghalaya), Chief Justice of Jharkhand (rtd) Bhagwati Prasad and Chief Justice of J & K (rtd) B A Khan – have been proposed for the post of Chairman of Delhi Human Right Commission. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Besides, government has suggested three names of human rights activists for the member of state human rights body. These names are Raj Mangal Prasad, S C Agarwal and Indu Prakash.Delhi Home Minister Satyendar Jain has convened a meeting of committee comprising Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Speaker of Delhi Assembly Ram Niwas Goel, Home Minister and Opposition leader in Assembly Vijendra Gupta, tomorrow.”It is a misnomer that human rights violations are not there in cities. It happens in cities also. It is totally unacceptable that Delhi has no state human rights commission for last 22 years,” Justice Thakur had said on the occasion of Human Rights Day here on December 10.

Amitabh Thakur will have to move govt first against his suspension: Allahabad HC

After the disposal of the appeal, in the event the petitioner was still aggrieved, then he would have an opportunity to avail the remedy before Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) in accordance with law, the court observed.
File Photo
PTI
The Allahabad High Court on Wednesday said suspended IPS officer Amitabh Thakur will have first to approach the central government through the competent authority by filing an appropriate appeal against his suspension order. It said that in the event such an appeal was filed with in 15 days from today, the central government shall dispose of the it within three weeks.After the disposal of the appeal, in the event the petitioner was still aggrieved, then he would have an opportunity to avail the remedy before Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) in accordance with law, the court observed.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A division bench of Justice Amreshwar Pratap Sahi and Justice Attau Rahman Masoodi passed the judgement while disposing of a writ petition filed by Thakur challenging his suspension order dated July 13 this year.The petitioner alleged that the continued suspension order on account of inaction of the respondent – state and the malafide alleged deserve to be interfered with and the court should invoke its writ jurisdiction for quashing the same. A preliminary objection was raised on behalf of the respondents with regard to the maintainability of the writ petition while referring to rulings of the apex court and opposed the petition. In response, the petitioner had drawn the attention of the court to the order passed by the CAT dated November 30.”The suspension order has to be viewed in the light of the allegations raised on the issue of jurisdiction, violation of rules and malafides, if any, and the Central Administrative Tribunal is not precluded from entertaining any such petition as has been observed in the order dated November 30,” the court observed.Thakur was suspended after he had accused Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, on July 10 of threatening him on phone. He alleged that Yadav was angry because his wife Nutan had filed a corruption case against a minister in the state government. However, the state government said that Thakur was suspended on charges of indiscipline and corruption.

Nirbhaya rape case: Actions that have been taken towards women safety since then

The case garnered a lot of attention and became synonymous with women’s rights for safety in this country as well as outside.

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The 2012 Delhi gang rape or the Nirbhaya rape case brought forth a lot of issues right from the power of youth who unanimously stood up for a cause, to the security of women in the democratic country which boasts of being a female nation.The case garnered a lot of attention and became synonymous with women’s rights for safety in this country as well as outside. However, after all these years, were these issues addressed as they should have been?Our newspapers, today, still show the ongoing discussion and divided opinion on the release of juvenile convict or about Parliament contemplating on criminalising marital rape. However, does a country with a female population of 624 million, feel safe as instances of sexual exploitation make news every morning?<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Three years down the line, let us see if things seemed to have changed for better or for worse after the horrifying night of December 16:Positive changes that have been made:The Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013 which was initially an ordinance promulgated by Pranab Mukherjee on April 3, 2013, after this incident was passed and made into a legislation by the Parliament in March 2013. This legislation was formed after reviewing 80,000 recommendations that were received after wide consultations and research by the Justice Verma Committee. Several crimes like stalking, voyeurism were clearly specified and included in the list of new crimes in this legislation. Acid violence and disrobing, a common crime in India, was further elaborated on with respect to the punishment that should be given to the convict.
Under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, the age of consent was increased from 16 to 18.
In order to ensure that victims are not hesitant in filing a complaint, the security blanket that protected public servants and police officers has been removed.
Stalking, voyeurism and sexual harassment, which were one considered gender neutral, were changed to offence committed on women.
The law also states that in case of repeated offence of rape or in case where victim has been led to a comatose stage, death penalty can be pronounced on convict. Whereas, there is also an increase in jail term. (Unlike what happened in Aruna Shanbaug case.)
Changes that have not been made yet:
The Juvenile Justice Act which deals with punishment for juveniles accused of heinous crimes is still pending in Parliament.
Marital rape is still legal in the country.
While Ram Singh, a convict, died while he was being tried, the other four Mukesh Singh, Vinay Sharma, Pawan Gupta and Akshay Thakur were given death sentence by fast track court, which was upheld by Delhi Court, but the Supreme Court has stayed their death sentence.
Juvenile, who was said to be the most brutal, has served his detention period of three years, may be released on December 20, and Women and child development (WCD) may grant him a rehabilitation grant of Rs. 10,000. However, Subramanian Swamy, a BJP leader has filed a PIL, seeking a stay on his release.

It’s a daunting task, felt obliged: SC on improving collegium

A five-judge constitution bench headed by Justice J S Khehar said that compilation of the written suggestions placed before it was in the nature of a summary prepared out of approximately 11,500 pages of views expressed.
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The Supreme Court on Wednesday said that it “felt obliged” while dealing with the daunting task of working for improvement of the judicial system of collegium for appointing judges in higher judiciary and termed it as a very challenging responsibility.A five-judge constitution bench headed by Justice J S Khehar said that compilation of the written suggestions placed before it was in the nature of a summary prepared out of approximately 11,500 pages of views expressed.The bench, which passed a slew of guidelines to improve the collegium system to make it more transparent and accountable, took into account the suggestions received from stakeholders who had sent them on the website of the Ministry of Law and Justice.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Even though the task seemed to be daunting, we felt obliged to take up the responsibility, as it was after all, for an improvement of the judicial system and such an opportunity must not be lost,” the bench said.”We had a very challenging responsibility to embark upon and reflect, and thereafter, to sieve such of the suggestions as were likely to improve the ‘collegium system’. Only then would we be in a position to sponsor their introduction into the Memorandum of Procedure for the appointment of Judges of the higher judiciary,” it said.In its order, the apex court noted that a few suggestions, “though honestly and meaningfully expressed, contained diametrically opposite recommendations.””It was, therefore, felt that the suggestions received should be compiled in an orderly manner so as to enable all concerned stakeholders to have a bird’s eye view of the same, thereby possibly making the debate thereon more judicious,” it noted.The court also said that Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi had made an “impassioned submission, not in any obstructive manner, but as a matter of faithful assistance, suggesting that we should desist from pursuing the contemplated course of action.”

No certainty of justice even after 3 years of Nirbhaya case: Activists

Various events including candlelight vigils and art exhibitions are being organised in the national capital tomorrow as a token of remembrance for Nirbhaya.
File Photo
Reuters
On the third anniversary of Nirbhaya gang-rape case, activists on Wednesday said that women continue to face violence in every sphere of life and that it was the certainty of justice which can bring about a change and not the severity of punishment.”In the three years since December 2012, women continue to face violence in every space they occupy, including their own homes, public transport and at workplaces. There have been many attacks on women and girls, some accompanied by huge media coverage, but most taking place away from the public glare,” Kavita Krishnan, Secretary of the All India Progressive Women’s Association said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We stand today in hope with millions across the country -and indeed, the world – that justice will prevail in all cases, including the December 2012 case, according to the prevailing laws of the land. We reiterate our demand for certainty of justice and not severity of punishment,” she added.Krishnan is signatory to a statement endorsed by 108 women activists, students and faculty from DU, JNU and Ambedkar university and progressive leaders, issued on the third anniversary of the December 16 gang-rape case today.”The government is using issue of violence against women to push through regressive policies like death penalty, or lowering the age of juvenile — even though the Justice Verma Committee carefully considered and rejected these measures as counter– productive and against the interests of victims of gender violence,” the statement said.”If we turn to cases filed under the new amendments to the law against sexual assault that were passed in the wake of the movement in December 2012, the scene is dismal. Be it the women in Muzaffarnagar, Bhagana or Bastar, or the women employees of Tehelka or TERI, they all await justice. The police and the judicial system, not to mention society, the media and political powers that rule at states or the Centre, have mostly worked to subvert the law. Worryingly, even as women who file cases under the laws enacted to protect women are feeling betrayed and vulnerable, a growing clamour brands the laws against gender-based violence as ‘draconian,’ ‘biased against men’,” the statement added.Six persons including a juvenile, had brutally assaulted and raped a 23-year-old girl in a moving bus in south Delhi on December 16, 2012. The victim had succumbed to her injuries in a Singapore hospital on December 29, 2012. Mukesh, Vinay, Pawan and Akshay were awarded death penalty by a trial court in the gang-rape and murder case which was later confirmed by Delhi High Court. Their appeals are pending before the Supreme Court. Accused Ram Singh had allegedly committed suicide in Tihar Jail on March 11, 2013, and proceedings against him were abated following his death.The Centre had earlier this week asked Delhi High Court to extend the observation home stay of the juvenile convict who is scheduled to be released on Sunday, saying several mandatory aspects were missing from the post-release rehabilitation plan which needed to be considered before setting him free.Various events including candlelight vigils and art exhibitions are being organised in the national capital tomorrow as a token of remembrance for Nirbhaya. In memory of their beloved daughter and to reaffirm their lifelong commitment to improving women’s safety, the parents of the victim, in collaboration with women’s and citizens groups, are also marking the day as ‘Nirbhaya Chetna Divas’ at Jantar Mantar.

Supreme Court appoints Justice Virendra Singh as UP Lokayukta

The bench regretted that its several orders have not been “heeded” by the constitutional functionaries — the chief minister, the leader of opposition and the chief justice of the Allahabad high court.

In an unusual order, the Supreme Court on Wednesday exercised its constitutional authority and appointed formed High Court judge, Justice Virendra Singh, as Lokayukta of Uttar Pradesh after the state government failed to comply with its directives.In an embarrassment for the SP government in Uttar Pradesh, the bench examined a list of nominees and ordered the appointment.”The failure of constitutional functionaries to comply with the orders of the highest court of the land is deeply regretted and astonishing,” a bench headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi said, adding, “We, therefore, proceed to exercise our right under Article 142 of the Constitution to remedy the situation by passing an appropriate order.” The court said that it appoints Justice Singh as Lokayukta and asked the state government to file a report by December 20 indicating compliance of its order.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The bench regretted that its several orders have not been “heeded” by the constitutional functionaries — the chief minister, the leader of opposition and the chief justice of the Allahabad high court.In the forenoon, the bench took strong note of the submission of senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the state government, that though it had shortlisted five names but no consensus has been arrived at on a specific person.The bench then asked Sibal to provide the names by 12.30 PM itself and said, “we know how to get our orders complied with”.The law provides that a high-powered committee of the chief minister, the leader of opposition and the chief justice of the concerned high court together appoints the chief of the state ombudsman.Earlier on December 14, the apex court had rapped the UP government for not appointing Lokayukta in the state despite its directions, saying it seemed that appointing authorities have their “own agenda”.The bench was hearing the pleas filed by Mahendra Kumar Jain and lawyer Radhakant Tripathi seeking a direction to the state to appoint the Lokayukta at the earliest in pursuance of the Supreme Court orders.

Paris deal frames climate ambition in ‘lens of equity’: India

The Paris climate change agreement is a victory for climate justice, India has said stressing that the multilateral deal preserves the development imperatives of developing countries and frames climate ambition in a “lens of equity”.

The Paris climate change agreement is a victory for climate justice, India has said stressing that the multilateral deal preserves the development imperatives of developing countries and frames climate ambition in a “lens of equity”.”India is happy with the outcome of the COP-21 in Paris.As our Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) said, we are all winners in the Paris outcome. Climate Justice has won and the new Agreement marks a new push jointly by all nations for a greener future,” India’sDeputy Permanent Representative Ambassador Bhagwant Bishnoi said at a briefing organised here yesterday by the President of General Assembly on the just concluded climate summit in Paris.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Bishnoi said India participated in Paris in a spirit of openness, constructiveness and flexibility and India’s voice was a voice of developing countries.”Our call for climate justice was based on the centrality of equity, historical responsibilities and the right to development for the world’s poorest.”We are happy that the Paris Agreement acknowledges and preserves the development imperatives of India and other developing countries, framing climate ambition in a lens of equity,” he said.Noting that the agreement unequivocally acknowledges the imperative of climate justice, Bishnoi said the deal based itself on the principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities.”We are also happy that the Agreement differentiates between the actions of developed and developing countries across its elements,” he said as he expressed appreciation for efforts of French President Francois Hollande climate envoy Laurence Tubing and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.”The Paris Agreement has given a new hope and direction to our collective effort to address climate change. The COP-21 in P aris has marked a high point in what has been a defining year in multilateralism,” Bishnoi said.He noted that the Paris Agreement complements the 2030 Development Agenda and taken together, both the outcomes mark a new beginning for international cooperation to protect the health of the planet and ensure a life of dignity to all people.UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has termed the Paris Agreement “a health insurance policy for the planet”.

What’ve you done to stop trees from dying, Bombay High Court asks BMC

A division bench consisting of Justice VM Kanade and Justice Revati Mohite Dhere said, “Something needs to be done to prevent the trees from dying, all that we see these days are trees vanishing from Mumbai.”

Several rain trees are vanishing from the city

dna
Observing that steps need to be taken on an urgent basis to stop city’s green cover from shrinking further, the Bombay High Court on Tuesday directed the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to enumerate the steps it has taken to save rain trees which are dying dying due to mealy bug infection. A division bench consisting of Justice VM Kanade and Justice Revati Mohite Dhere said, “Something needs to be done to prevent the trees from dying, all that we see these days are trees vanishing from Mumbai.” The court made these observations while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a Khar resident, Zoru Bhathena.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> As per the petition, since 2010, trees between Khar and Borivali have been infected by the bug and the BMC has not been able to identify any cause or cure, following which over 100 trees have died. BMC counsel Trupti Puranik informed the court that several steps have been taken by the BMC and it is also ready to take guidance from the departments of Botany and Horticulture to protect the trees.” The petition states that BMC collects tree cess, which is included in the property tax, and so is duty bound to protect the trees. Further, it states that a Pune-based central government organisation, Maharashtra Association for Cultivation of Science, Agharkar Research institute has some remedial measures and those should be adopted by the civic body to protect the trees. Several trees can be seen dead in the Western suburbs, which are now being painted by graffiti artists. The petition prayed for directions to the BMC to protect the trees, replace dead trees with new ones and take steps to increase tree cover in the city. The court posted the matter for further hearing on December 22.

Supreme Court hints at banning diesel-run SUV in Delhi

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) TS Thakur slammed the car dealers who argued against the National Green Tribunal order banning registration of diesel cars.

Around 23% of cars registered in Delhi are run on diesel

Observing that the rich can’t move around the capital city in SUVs polluting the environment, the Supreme Court on Tuesday said it would ban registration of diesel-run SUVs, cars with engine capacity of more than 2000 cc and commercial vehicles for three to four months and double the green cess levied on trucks entering Delhi.Further indicating that only CNG cabs may be allowed to ply on city roads and the ban on burning of the municipal waste may be enforced strictly, besides introduction of Euro-IV emission norms, the court also agreed to ban the entry of trucks registered before 2005 in the national capital region and increase the green tax for trucks entering the capital.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) TS Thakur slammed the car dealers who argued against the National Green Tribunal order banning registration of diesel cars.”People’s life is at stake and you are interested in selling cars,” the court said.After hearing the Delhi air pollution issue for about three hours, the bench said the detailed order will be passed on Wednesday.The court had on October 12 ordered that light duty vehicles would have to pay Rs 700 and three-axle vehicles Rs 1,300 to enter Delhi in addition to the toll tax from November 1 as ‘environment compensation charge’ (ECC) in a bid to check high pollution levels in the city.Now, the light duty vehicles may have to pay Rs 1,400 and three-axle vehicles Rs 2,600 as ECC for entering Delhi.”Why don’t you people take credit for cleaning Delhi air? You could enumerate the steps to be taken and why you are asking the court to do it,” the bench said and asked the counsel representing Centre and the Delhi government to come out with comprehensive long and short term plans to tackle the menace of air pollution.The court said that as an interim measure for three-four months, it may ban registration of SUVs, high-end cars having engine capacity of over 2000 cc, besides banning entry of commercial vehicles, registered prior to 2005, in Delhi.The bench was hearing various pleas including the 1984 PIL filed by environmentalist M C Mehta.Last week, the green tribunal had directed that no new diesel vehicles will be registered in Delhi. The tribunal has also said that central and state government must stop buying diesel cars in Delhi.On the issue of the Delhi government’s plan to allow cars with odd and even registration numbers on alternate days from January 1 to check pollution, the court said, “We are not sure if it would help. You can implement it if it is going to help. We haven’t stopped you.”Around 23 per cent of the cars registered in Delhi are diesel. Diesel cars can legally emit 7.5 times more particulate matter than the petrol versions and produce more toxic nitrogen dioxide. Diesel emissions are also cancer causing, says the World Health Organisation.

New Delhi: 794 driving licences seized by police for traffic violations

Five driving licences were seized for drunken driving.
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As many as 794 driving licences were seized by the police on Tuesday for violations of traffic rules in the national capital on the first day of implementation of directions of Supreme Court’s committee on road safety.”The maximum number of driving licences were seized for red light jumping and over-speeding. Till 5 pm a total of 794 driving licences were seized,” said Muktesh Chander, Special Commissioner of Police (Traffic). The 794 drivers whose licences were seized will not be able to drive any motor vehicle for at least a period of next three months, he said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”The number of driving licences seized for red light jumping were 368, over-speeding 287, using mobile while driving 66, and carrying passengers in goods vehicles 57.”Five driving licences were seized for drunken driving. The Traffic cops also impounded 43 vehicles for various violations, said the officer.The Operation Seizure by Delhi Traffic Police started at C Hexagon on Kasturba Gandhi Marg crossing at 10 am with Chander supervising the exercise.A three member committee chaired by Justice KS Radhakrishnan had directed all the states and Union Territories in the country to implement its directions on road safety and submit their reports within three months from September 1, 2015.

We failed to get justice for our daughter, says Nirbhaya’s father

The juvenile convict, allegedly “the most brutal” of the six accused, is scheduled to be released on December 20 after his term at the observation home ends.

The juvenile rapist in the Nirbhaya gangrape case.
File Photo
dna Research & Archives
“We have failed. Now there is no hope for justice,” said the distraught parents of December 16, 2012 gangrape victim on the eve of the third anniversary of the incident that shook the nation as they appealed not to release the juvenile convict.”With each passing day her memories get more intense. But we are not even able to face the memories as we have failed to secure justice for her. And now there is no hope for justice!,” the 50-year-old father of the victim said in a choked voice.According to the father, it has been three years and yet the four culprits have not been hanged. The juvenile convict, allegedly “the most brutal” of the six accused, is scheduled to be released on December 20 after his term at the observation home ends. The father of the girl said the youth, who was a juvenile at the time of the incident, should not be released as he is a “threat” to the society. They have also submitted representations to the Home Ministry and National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) demanding the same.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”For us he is the the killer of our daughter who is being set free despite his heinous crime. We demand that he should not be released,” the father said.But despondence enters his tone as he says, “We are small people. Who will listen to us? For the last three years we have knocked each and every door with the hope of getting justice, but all in vain,” he said.Meanwhile, the Centre had yesterday asked Delhi High Court to extend the observation home stay of the juvenile convict, saying several mandatory aspects were missing from the post-release rehabilitation plan which needed to be considered before setting him free. The father also stressed that it was important to assess the mental health of the boy before releasing him.”There is a need to assess his mindset to ensure that he does not attack another girl like he had attacked my daughter after being released,” he said.On Wednesday, in remembrance of their beloved daughter and to reaffirm their lifelong commitment to improve women’s safety, the parents of the December 16 victim, in collaboration with women’s and citizens groups, will mark the day as ‘Nirbhaya Chetna Divas’ at Jantar Mantar.

Supreme Court pulls up CBI for delay in coal scam cases

Expressing unhappiness over the “prolonged delay” in the investigation of coal scam-related cases by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), the Supreme Court on Monday said, “it could not be an unending affair.””Something has to be done. It can’t go on like this,” said a bench of Justice Madan B Lokur, Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice A K Sikri reminding the investigating agency that it was supposed to wrap up all the investigations by December 31, 2014 and that now 2015 is going to end.Noting that a “considerable time has already been taken”, the court granted the CBI time till March 31, 2016 and asked it to complete the investigation as early as possible.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The court observation came after the investigating agency sought its nod for relieving one of its senior officers, who is supervising investigations into coal scam-related cases, upon his “prestigious” appointment to the National Defence College.The court said that such movement of officers from the investigating agency delays the investigation after CBI’s counsel Amarendra Sharan tried to impress upon the court that movement of the senior ranking officer for another posting may not affect the pace of investigations.”It can’t go on like this. We are very clear about it. You have to be clear as well,” the court the CBI.Sharan said the investigation was not into the old cases but in the 15 new cases that were taken up later, adding the probe into these case was “very fast”.Meanwhile, the bench was also unhappy with the Directorate of Enforcement’s provisional orders for the attachments of properties worth Rs186 crore, Rs 24.5 crore and Rs 2 crore but no complaint has been filed so far in two cases wherein the investigating agency in its progress report till September 11 had said that it would be filing “complaint shortly”.In the third case also it failed to file the complaint.Sharan told the court that in the first two cases, the complaints was with the special public prosecutor R S Cheema who is heading the prosecution of the coal scam cases by the CBI. He also sought time till end of this month to file a fresh status report.

Doing ‘our best’, will appoint new Lokayukta soon: UP after SC cracks whip on state govt

The apex court on Monday rapped the UP government for not appointing Lokayukta despite its directions and ordered compliance by December 16, saying it seemed that appointing authorities have their “own agenda”.
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dna Research & Archives
The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday said it was doing “its best” to appoint a new Lokayukta as soon as possible, hours after Supreme Court cracked the whip on the state government for not appointing the anti-corruption ombudsman even after its earlier directions. Senior government officials on Monday went into a huddle in Lucknow after the apex court’s direction to the UP government to appoint a new Lokayukta within two days.”The state government is doing all its best to appoint a new Lokayukta as early as possible,” an official spokesman told PTI. They also said that senior officials were going through today’s order.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The apex court on Monday rapped the UP government for not appointing Lokayukta despite its directions and ordered compliance by December 16, saying it seemed that appointing authorities have their “own agenda”.”Why do you not appoint the Lokayukta? Why has our order not been complied with? Why can’t the Chief Minister, the Governor and the Chief Justice (of the High Court) sort this out?,” the bench comprising Justices Ranjan Gogoi and N V Ramana said.”We don’t mince words. It seems, each one of you have your own agenda… you make the appointment by Wednesday,” it said while fixing the petitions on the issue for hearing on December 16.A tug of war is being witnessed between the state government and Governor Ram Naik for the last several months over the appointment of a new anti-corruption ombudsman after justice (retd) N K Mehrotra.In August this year, the Governor had returned a file recommending Justice (retd) Raveendra Singh’s name to Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav for the third time.A Raj Bhawan communique had said the Governor returned the file asking the state government to follow proper procedure for the appointment. It had said that Leader of the Opposition Swami Parsad Maurya wrote to the Governor informing him that the three members of the selection committee — the Chief Minister, Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court and Leader of the Opposition in the state Assembly — never met to decide the name of the Lokayukta.The state government officially recommended Singh’s name on August 5. The file has since gone back and forth thrice. Naik has made it clear he will not give his assent until the name is cleared in a meeting of the selection committee. He has also recommended that the selection committee first consider a panel of names rather than directly take an opinion on just one name.The Supreme Court had issued notice to the state government on December 4, asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against it for non-compliance of its order to appoint a new Lokayukta in the state. A bench comprising justices Ranjan Gogoi and NV Ramana had sought response from the state on a fresh contempt petition alleging that despite apex court’s orders to find a suitable replacement of current Lukayukta, no appointment has been made so far.Amid the tug-of-war between UP Rajbhawan and the state government, Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav had met Governor Ram Naik on December 9. The Governor is believed to have told the chief minister to find out a way with regard to appointment of Lokayukta after discussing the issue with Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court DY Chandrachud. The Governor does not appear to be in favour of referring the Lokayukta issue for presidential consideration as it will only prolong the matter.Naik has returned the file concerning the appointment of a new Lokayukta to the state government a number of times, each time asking the chief minister to follow the proper procedure for selecting the ombudsman. The process to select the new Lokayukta ran into rough weather after the Chief Justice had expressed his reservations against the government’s nominee Justice (retd) Ravindra Singh Yadav.The state government and the Governor are also not on the same page on Yadav’s nomination and the file recommending his name has moved back and forth between Rajbhawan and the state government. The UP Assembly has passed the Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta and Up-Lokayukta (Amendment) Bill, 2015, to amend Lokayukta Act dropping Allahabad High Court Chief Justice from the selection committee.The bill proposed that the committee be made a four-member body comprising the CM, Leader of the Opposition, Speaker and a retired judge who would be selected in consultation with the CM and Speaker. The amendment was passed after the Governor refused to accept the appointment on the grounds that a proper meeting of the selection committee was not held and also the Allahabad HC Chief Justice had expressed reservations in view of Singh’s proximity to the ruling Samajwadi Party. The bill is still awaiting the Governor’s nod.On April 24, last year, the court had upheld the constitutional validity of amendment in UP Lokayukta Act for fixing eight-year tenure for the anti-corruption ombudsman. It had also directed the state government to take steps for selecting new incumbent within six months. The apex court, in July this year, had taken note of a contempt petition alleging non-compliance of its on April 24, 2014 order and directed the state to do the needful within 30 days.Justice Mehrotra was appointed as Lokayukta on March 16, 2006 for six years. Later, the government granted him a two-year extension by amending the Act under which the tenure was extended to eight years or till a successor took over. While upholding the constitutional validity of the amendment to the UP Lokayukta Act, the court had directed the state government to take steps to select a new ombudsman within six months.

Supreme Court raps Uttar Pradesh govt for not appointing Lokayukta

The apex court, on December 4, had issued notice to the state government on a separate plea asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against it for non-compliance of its order to appoint a new Lokayukta in the state.

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav
File Photo
PTI
The Supreme Court on Monday rapped the Uttar Pradesh government for not appointing Lokayukta in the state despite its directions and ordered compliance by December 16, saying it seemed that appointing authorities have their “own agenda”.”Why do you not appoint the Lokayukta? Why has our order not been complied with? Why can’t the Chief Minister, the Governor and the Chief Justice (of the High Court) sort this out?,” the bench comprising Justices Ranjan Gogoi and N V Ramana said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We don’t mince words. It seems, each one of you have your own agenda… you make the appointment by Wednesday,” it said while fixing the petitions on the issue for hearing on December 16. The bench was critical of the submissions made by the Advocate General of Uttar Pradesh that the needful would be done shortly.”Last time also, you had said the same thing,” the bench said.The bench was hearing the pleas filed by Mahendra Kumar Jain and lawyer Radhakant Tripathi seeking a direction to the state to appoint the Lokayukta at the earliest in pursuance of the Supreme Court orders. The apex court, on December 4, had issued notice to the state government on a separate plea asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against it for non-compliance of its order to appoint a new Lokayukta in the state.On April 24, last year, the court had upheld the constitutional validity of amendment in UP Lokayukta Act for fixing eight-year tenure for the anti-corruption ombudsman. It had also directed the state government to take steps for selecting new incumbent of Lokayukta Justice (retd) N K Mehrotra within six months.The apex court had in July this year taken note of a contempt petition alleging non-compliance of its on April 24, 2014 order and directed the state to do the needful within 30 days.The contempt plea, filed by Sachidanand Gupta, had alleged disobedience by the state government. Advocate Kamini Jaiswal, appearing for Gupta, had said that the state administration needed to be issued contempt notice for its brazen defiance of the orders. Justice Mehrotra was appointed as Lokayukta on March 16, 2006 for six years and later, the government granted him a two-year extension by amending the Act under which the tenure was extended to eight years or till a successor took over.While upholding the constitutional validity of the amendment to the UP Lokayukta Act, the court, in 2014, had directed the state government to take steps to select a new ombudsman within six months.

Sikhs will never forgive Congress for 1984 riots, says Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal

Badal said besides “planning this genocide”, Congress has rubbed salt into the wounds of Sikhs by “shielding and honoring” the perpetrators of this barbaric incident with coveted positions.

RNA
The Sikh community will never forgive the Congress for “hatching” the conspiracy of 1984 anti-Sikh riots, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Sunday said.”The wounds of 1984 Sikh carnage will remain afresh in the psyche of every Sikh, and the Sikh community will never forgive Congress for hatching the conspiracy of this dastardly act,” Badal said.After laying the foundation stone of a new police station building here, the Chief Minister said it was a well-known fact that the “heinous crime”, in which hundreds of innocent Sikhs were massacred, was “planned and executed” by the then Congress government at the Centre.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Badal said besides “planning this genocide”, Congress has rubbed salt into the wounds of Sikhs by “shielding and honoring” the perpetrators of this barbaric incident with coveted positions.The Chief Minister said Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), being the sole custodian of rights of Sikhs, had raised the issue of justice for victims of this genocide with the Government of India time and again, and this crusade will continue till exemplary punishment is not ensured to the guilty.Badal said he had also taken up this issue with the NDA government at the Centre, which has assured to give justice to the victims of this genocide”This issue has bruised the psyche of every Sikh and SAD is duty-bound to ensure that its perpetrators were brought to the book,” Badal said.Refuting the charges of political vendetta leveled by the opposition parties, the Chief Minister said not even a single case has been registered by police out of vendetta and such allegations are totally baseless.However, Badal said if anybody has any grievance regarding it, then they could directly approach him with facts.The Chief Minister said the state government was examining the allegations regarding fake encounters leveled by a former cop Parminder Singh Pinky.However, he said that the person who was levying these allegations was not having any credibility.The Chief Minister further said that the state government was laying special focus on maintaining law and order in the state for which special thrust was being laid on construction of police stations and modernization of police.He said under this scheme, new buildings of police station at Chohla Sahib would come up at a cost of Rs 1.56 crore and that at Tarn Taran would be constructed at cost of Rs 2 crore.Earlier, addressing the public gatherings during Sangat Darshan at village Tur, Khan Chabri and Kahlwan, the Chief Minister said the massive response to ‘Sadbhawna’ rallies in various districts of state have proved that the people of Punjab want peace and progress in the state and there was no space for divisive agenda in the state.He said peace and harmony were the basic ingredients of progress and prosperity of any country.He said peace and harmony were the basic ingredients of progress and prosperity of any country.Recalling the turbulent times of militancy, Badal said more than 21,000 innocent people lost their lives during those times and Punjabis paid a heavy price of that period as due to it, the state lagged behind in development.He said ‘Sadbhawna’ rallies were being organized not for any political purpose, but for promoting ethos of peace and communal harmony in the state.

PM Modi hails COP21 climate agreement as victory of justice, path towards ‘greener future’

Deliberations at COP21 and Paris agreement demonstrate the collective wisdom of world leaders to mitigate climate change, said the PM.

PM Narendra Modi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday described the landmark climate change deal reached in Paris last night as the victory of “climate justice” and said there are no winners or losers in the outcome.He appreciated how every country rose to the challenge for reaching the agreement at the Conference of Parties (COP)-21 and said deliberations showed collective wisdom of the world leaders to mitigate climate change.”Outcome of #ParisAgreement has no winners or losers. Climate justice has won & we are all working towards a greener future,” Modi tweeted, commenting on the legally-binding pact which seeks to limit global warming to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius and making developed nations commit $100 billion a year from 2020 to help developing countries.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”#ClimateChange remains a challenge but #ParisAgreement demonstrates how every nation rose to the challenge, working towards a solution,” the Prime Minister said in another tweet.Related Read: COP21 Conference: World agrees on historic climate accord, sets path to move away from fossil fuelsHe added: “Deliberations at #COP21 & #ParisAgreement demonstrates the collective wisdom of world leaders to mitigate climate change.” The historic agreement signed by 195 countries was reached after tough deliberations for days.Just before the 31-page document was finalised, French President Francois Hollande, who hosted the conference, called up Modi to apprise him of the latest status at the talks. “The Prime Minister appreciated this gesture of French President,” a PMO statement said.

Parliamentary panel slams judicial activism, Supreme Court monitoring of probes

The remarks assume significance as probes in most of multi-crore corruption cases like 2G spectrum allocation, coal blocks allocation and Vyapam scams are being monitored by the Supreme Court.

Supreme Court

A parliamentary committee has criticised judicial activism of Supreme and higher courts by overseeing investigation and passing interim directions to CBI saying it may appear to be a colourable exercise of power by them.The committee also noted that various high courts and Supreme Court are frequently issuing directions to CBI to handle cases relating to Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 as also of “Public Order”.The superior courts are even directing CBI in a number of cases to report day-to-day progress in a sealed cover bypassing Sections 172 and 173 of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 and performing functions envisaged under the criminal justice system of the country for the lowest rung of criminal court, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice said in its report.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Judicial activism of higher judiciary by taking pains of overseeing an investigation and passing interim directions to CBI and even pre-empting the rights and remedies available to affected persons under criminal justice system.”It may, therefore, appear to affected persons as a pre- emptive and colourable exercise of power by the superior courts,” it said.The remarks assume significance as probes in most of multi-crore corruption cases like 2G spectrum allocation, coal blocks allocation and Vyapam scams are being monitored by the Supreme Court.

Would do anything to bring 2008 Mumbai attackers to justice: US

When told that Headley may provide a great deal of information about the attack, Kirby said, “I don’t have anything specific and it would be inappropriate for me to comment on an ongoing court case like that anyway.”

File Photo

The US on Saturday said it wants to see the perpetrators of the 2008 Mumbai attack brought to justice and will do anything to support India in this regard.”…we want to see the perpetrators of the Mumbai attack brought to justice and obviously continue to want to do anything we can to support Indian authorities in that task,” State Department spokesman John Kirby said on Friday when asked about David Headley turning approver after being pardoned by a Mumbai court. Headley is currently serving 35-year prison sentence in the US for his role in the Mumbai terror attack.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>When told that Headley may provide a great deal of information about the attack, Kirby said, “I don’t have anything specific and it would be inappropriate for me to comment on an ongoing court case like that anyway.” “Again, we share an interest in seeing the Mumbai attackers being brought to justice a terrible, dastardly terrorist attack,” he said. Kirby said India is a very close friend and partner.”I think it’s self-evident in recent years that both our countries have fallen victim to terrorist attacks and continue to need to be on to be vigilant about terrorism perpetrated against our citizens, and so it makes perfect sense that we would look for ways to cooperate more closely and to improve the flow of information between our two countries,” he said.Asked if the State Department was playing any role in intelligence and information sharing on terrorists as mentioned by Indian defence minister Manohar Parikkar after his meeting with US Defence Secretary Ash Carter, he said, “I can’t speak for the Defence Department. As for the State Department, we have we maintain good, strong relations with our counterparts in the Indian Government.”I won’t speak about intelligence matters, but I can tell you that that relationship remains strong, remains vibrant, and the Secretary s interest is very clear in making sure that the relationship continues to strengthen and grow going forward across a wide range of issues, not just security issues,” he added.

Developed countries must honour their commitments, says India at the UN

India s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Bhagwant Bishnoi said the Development Agenda 2030 places people at the centre of development and recognize that poverty eradication needs to be the overarching objective of the efforts of the international community.

United Nations building

India has asked developed countries to honour their commitments towards development assistance, particularly to least developed nations, stressing that efforts to achieve poverty eradication should be based on the principles of social justice and equity.”While developing countries continue to address poverty eradication, the developed world must also honour their commitments with regard to development assistance, particularly to Least Developed Countries. For effective national action, it is necessary that there also be an enabling international environment,” India s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Bhagwant Bishnoi said.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He said the Development Agenda 2030 places people at the centre of development and recognize that poverty eradication needs to be the overarching objective of the efforts of the international community.Related Read: COP21 Climate Conference: Final draft of climate deal ready, to be unveiled today”It is also imperative that our efforts for the achievement of this objective be based on the principles of social justice and equity,” he said on Friday in the UN General Assembly at a session on social development.He said while globalization and technology have brought considerable benefit to global society, the lack of equity in global processes continues to enhance inequality among and between countries, including the widening digital divide.”In this regard, we need to emphasize that market reform and structural adjustment programmes need to focus on all people,” he said. Bishnoi highlighted the approach taken by the Narendra Modi government to promote sustainable and inclusive growth for the welfare and well being of all people in the country, without leaving anybody behind.”The motto of the government is ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas’ or ‘together with all, development for all’. The government has accorded the highest importance to education for all, gender equality & women empowerment, skill development and Digital India,” he added.

Extension of juvenile’s stay at observation home: Delhi High Court seeks report

The court asked whether a management committee has been constituted as per the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Rules, is it still in existence and what are its activities.

BJP leader Subramanian Swamy on Friday moved a plea before the Delhi High Court for an order not to release the juvenile convict in the December 16, 2012, gang-rape case till he has reformed completely.Issuing notice to Centre, a bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw also asked the government to inform it about the measures taken, if any, regarding post release rehabilitation of the juvenile, who will be freed on December 15 after serving the three year incarceration.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The court asked whether a management committee has been constituted as per the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Rules, is it still in existence and what are its activities.”What are the plans… It is not an ordinary case and requires consideration,” the bench said.The court passed the order after the Centre’s lawyer told the bench that there was no opposition to extension of the juvenile’s stay at the observation home, as per the rules the committee has to make plans for post release rehabilitation.Counsel for the Centre placed before the court the reports of the IB relating to the behaviour of the juvenile during his stay in special home.However, the court asked the counsel to place the report before it in a sealed cover.The government was responding to Swamy’s petition, who claimed that there is lacuna in the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act.JJ Board had sentenced the juvenile three years detention in reformation home. In his petition before the HC, Swamy contended that “no provision has been made in the Act, to provide for vicious unregenerate convicted juveniles who despite having undergone the reformation process for the maximum penalty of three year’s custody in a special home, continue to be a menace to the society”. Swamy said provision has to be made to deal with such juvenile for further period in such a manner that he does not prove menace to the society. Six persons, including the juvenile, had brutally assaulted and raped a 23-year-old girl in a moving bus in south Delhi on December 16, 2012. The victim had died in a Singapore hospital on December 29, 2012. Mukesh, Vinay, Pawan and Akshay were awarded death penalty by trial court in the gang rape and murder case which was later confirmed by Delhi High Court. Their appeals are pending before the Supreme Court. Prime accused Ram Singh had allegedly committed in Tihar jail in March 2013.

Don’t register new diesel vehicles in capital: NGT tells Delhi govt

The National Green Tribunal (NGT) on Friday ordered the Delhi government to not register any new diesel vehicle from now on. The order, probably the first such in India, came from a bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar on a petition by Vardhaman Kaushik.The bench specifically asked the Delhi and Union governments to not buy diesel vehicles. “We direct the government to take a conscientious decision with regard to not buying diesel vehicles, whether by the central or the state government. “We direct all public authorities, corporations, DDA, police and other public departments to prepare an action plan for phasing out diesel vehicles, particularly trucks being used by these bodies,” the bench said. <!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Tribunal then told the Delhi government and the Centre: be ready with your action plans by January 6. Earlier this year, the NGT had passed an order for condemning 10-year-old diesel vehicles and 15-year old petrol vehicles. In its eight-page order on Friday, the bench said: “As an interim measure, till the next date of posting, subject to hearing all concerned parties, we direct that diesel vehicles of more than 10 years, as already directed, as well as new diesel vehicles would not be registered in NCT, Delhi.” This order, it said, has to be implemented with its earlier ones such as prohibition on burning of waste and dumping of construction waste on roads. The entire government machinery should clamp down on such activities, it said.That’s more green sheen in Delhi.The odd and even of AAP planWhat is even to the Chief Justice of India looks odd to the NGT. The NGT bench on Friday questioned the Delhi government’s odd-even traffic plan. The Tribunal said it has doubts about the efficacy and success of the plan. Only a few days ago, Supreme Court Chief Justice TS Thakur favoured the plan and advised fellow-judges to opt for a car-pool system. Have green belt around schoolsWhile addressing the hazard of toxic air on school children, the NGT said: “In relation to taking adequate measures for preventing air pollution in schools, particularly government and corporation schools, NCT Delhi is directed to submit a proposal for creating green belt, by covering the ground with grass and installing air filters in schools.”

Delhi HC not in favour of retired judges who head tribunals taking up private work

The court also said “a whole-time employee is expected to bestow all his time, energy and resources to the whole time employment and not to divert the same to any other job, work or vocation.”

The Delhi High Court on Friday observed that if retired judges who head or are part of statutory bodies, tribunals and commissions also simultaneously get involved in any other “commercial-legal” activity like arbitration, it may jeopardise reputation of their office.A bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw said “not only would pursuing such a vocation or occupation simultaneously with the office occupied be at the cost of the work of the said office, but may also jeopardise/ appear to jeopardise reputation of the said office…”<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The court also said “a whole-time employee is expected to bestow all his time, energy and resources to the whole time employment and not to divert the same to any other job, work or vocation.””Moreover, retired judges appointed as chairpersons or members of statutory bodies, tribunals.. discharge judicial /quasi-judicial functions and their involvement in any other commercial legal activity or as arbitrators would necessarily require them to interact, in all possibility, with same set of people…, giving rise to speculation about their impartiality in discharge of their duty in such capacity.”The court noted that though some statutes on appointment of chairperson/member of tribunals/statutory bodies prohibit taking up of any other work, this provision was not present in all legislations, and this “lacuna” resulted in some judges being entitled to taking up arbitrations while others who were similarly placed were barred.”It is precisely to remedy such a situation that amendments to the existing legislations/new legislation are/is proposed. However, the said process, inspite of our waiting for the last nearly five years, has not yielded any fruit,” it said.It, however, did not issue any directions on the issue as it felt the subject fell in the “domain” of the legislature. It only asked the government “to bestow special attention on the issue and to ensure that appropriate legislation is made at the earliest”.The court’s observations came in its judgement disposing of a PIL by NGO Common Cause, represented by advocate Prashant Bhushan, seeking that no retired Supreme Court or High Court judge should take up arbitration work while he/she was a chairperson/member of any government appointed constitutional /statutory body, commission, commission of inquiry, tribunal or appellate body.

Hit and run case: Salman withdraws from Supreme Court plea to summon Kamaal Khan as witness

The high court on Thursday acquitted Salman in the case, quashing the trial court order convicting and sentencing him for five years.

A day after the Bombay High Court acquitted Salman Khan in the 2002 hit-and-run case, the Bollywood superstar on Friday withdrew his plea from the Supreme Court seeking examination of his friend and singer Kamaal Khan as court witness in the case.A bench headed by Justice Madan B Lokur allowed Salman’s lawyer to withdraw his appeal after she said that it had become infructuous in the light of Bombay High Court judgement in the main case.The Bombay High Court had on November 30 dismissed Salman’s plea.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The high court yesterday acquitted Salman in the case, quashing the trial court order convicting and sentencing him for five years.It held that the prosecution had failed to prove “beyond reasonable doubt” that the actor was driving the vehicle at the time of accident and was drunk.